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miiUtt (or tlje Council of tfje finstttute t>8 






IJjjilosopjjttal Sorieiir of Wxthxfa, 

Including the Papers and Proceedings of the 

VOL. I.— 8vo, pp. 290,— with Plates and Plans, Price ONE GUINEA. 


Capt. Clarke's Inaugural Address. 

Dr. Mueller on Rare and Undescribed Australian Plants. 

Mr. R. B. Smyth on the Value and Durability of Building Materials. 

Mr. Blandowski's Excursion towards the Central Parts of Victoria. 

Mr. C. Hodgkinson's Rules and Tables of Railway Earthworks. 

Dr. Davey on the Construction of an Instrument for Ascertaining 

the Mean Temperature. 
Mr. Becker's Meteorological Observations at Bendigo. 
Mr. B. Stewart on the Influence of Gravity on the Physical Con- 
dition of the Moon's Surface. 
Mr. B. Stewart on the Adaptation of the Eye to the Nature of 

Dr. Mueller's Descriptive Characters of New Alpine Plants in 

Dr. Wilkie on the Failure of the Yan Yean Reservoir. 
Dr. Davey on the Meteorology of Melbourne. 
Mr. C. Hodgkinson on Evaporation of the Yan Yean Reservoir. 
Messrs. Acheson & Christy's Report on the Yan Yean. 
Mr. R. B. Smyth on the Influence of the Physical Character of a. 

Country on the Climate. 
Mr Blandowski's Description of Eossil Animalcuke in Primitive 

Mr. C. Hodgkinson's Practical Remarks on Hydrometry. 
Mr. Blandowski on the Primary Upheaval of the Land round 

Dr. Wilkie on the Water Supply of Melbourne. 
Mr. C. Hodgkinson's Remarks on the Geological and Chemical 

Nature of the Primary Rocks of Victoria. , 

melbo urne: 
JAMES J. BLUNDELL & Co., 44 Collins Street West. 



OF THE -^ 


<J^2 j 




ORjitefo for rlje (itouncil of ffie institute tig 




fa §) fttlaafljjhtcal Jnatitat* 




ART. I. On a new form of Propeller for Steam Ships, by David E. 

Wilkie, M.D., with three plates ... 1 — 12 

II. On the "LyreTSrd" (Meimra Superba) by J. WoOD Beilby, 

Esq., Gipps Land 12—14 

III. On the Phenomena attending an Interesting Case of Mirage, 

by Professor Wilson, M. A., Melbourne University ... 14 — 15 

IV. On the Cestracion PMKppi (Port Jackson Shark), Trigon in and 

Terehratula, of the Australian Seas, by Sizar Elliott, 

Esq 15—17 

V. On a new Mineral, from Mdvor, by K. P.ROUGH Smyth, Esq., 

C.E., F.G.S 17—19 

VI. On the Octoclinis Macleayana, a new Australian Pine, 
described by FERDINAND MUELLER, M.D., Ph.D., 
F.R.G.S., Colonial Botanist of Victoria, with a plate ... 20 — 22 

VII. On the Murray River Cod, with particulars of experiments in- 
stituted for introducing this fish into the Yarra-Yarra, by 
Edward Wilson, Esq 23 — 34 

VIII. On the supply of Water to the Town of Geelong, by 'John 
Millar, Esq., C.E., F.S.A-, &C, Engineer-in- Chief to the 
Geelong Water Commission ... ... ... ... ... 34 — 61 

IX. On the Construction of an Instrument for ascertaining the 
Dew Point, by R BROUGH Smyth, Esq. C.E., F.G-S,, with 
a plate 61—62 

X. Account of some new Australian Plants, by FERDINAND 

Mueller, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.G.S., &c, with two plates ... 62—77 

XI. On the Introduction of the British Song Bird, by EDWARD 

Wilson, Esq 77—88 

XII. On a Suggestion for a new Mode of Life Insurance, by Pro- 
fessor Wilson, M. A,, Melbourne University 88—92 

XIII. On a General Introduction of Useful Plants into Victoria, by 

Ferdinand Mueller, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.G.S., &c. ... 93—109 

XIV. On Railway Gradients, by William Austen Zeal, Esq., 109—124 

XV, Recent Discoveries in Natural History on the Lower Murray, 

by William Blandowski, Esq 124 — 137 

XVI- On the Astronomy and Mythology of the Aborigines of Vic- 
toria, by William Edward Stanbridge, Esq, 137—140 

ii Contents. 

XVII, On Extensive Infusoria Deposits in the Mallee Scrub, near 
Swan Hill, on the Lower Murray River, in Victoria ; and 
on the presence of Fucoidae in Silurian Rocks, near Mel- 
bourne, by William Blandowski, Esq., with two plates 141 — 146 

XVIII Observations on the Saw Fish, by Thomas E. Rawlinson, 

Esq., C.E 146—148 

XIX. An Historical Review of the Explorations of Australia, by 
Ferdinand Mueller, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.G.S., &c, with 

two plates 148—168 

XX- Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks, in South Aus- 
tralia, by the Reverend Julian Edmund Woods ... 168—176 

Proceedings — Reports of Committees i- xxiii 

„ Minutes of the Meetings of the Institute xxiv— 

Report of the Council for the year 1857 li ~ mi 

Balance Sheet to the end of 1857 liv— lv 

Appendix lvii-lxii 

List of Members, as at 31st December. 1857 

Laws of the Institute, adopted 25th September, 1857 

List of the Officers of the Institute for 1 857 

Errata.— Sixth line from bottom of page xx of "Proceedings," for "two," 
read five saddle horses. ■ 



Iftitoaajjlual Jttatttaty ufl f hto\m 

Art. I. — On a New Form of Propeller for Steam Ships. 
By David E. Wilkie, M.D. 

[Read before the Institute, 4tli February, 1857. 

Not more than forty years have elapsed since steam power 
was first successfully applied to the propulsion of ships by 
means of paddle wheels, and, ever since that time, paddle 
wheels, with a few modifications in their construction, have 
continued to maintain their ground, notwithstanding the 
numerous inventions that have been proposed as a substitute. 
The most important of these inventions is the screw, which 
was successfully brought into use in 1836 through the exer- 
tions of Capt. Ericcson and Mr. J. P. Smith. 

With the experience of twenty years the screw has under- 
gone several important improvements, — the most practically 
valuable of which appears to be that of Mr. Robert Griffiths, 
which furnishes a simple means of altering the pitch of the 
blades, according to the velocity and the resistance. This 
new form of screw has also the advantage of acting equally 
well reversely, so that, in this respect, the screw and the 
paddle wheels are very nearly equal. 

I shall not occupy your time with discussing the advan- 
tages and disadvantages of these two methods of propulsion ; 
but it is necessary to state, shortly, the facts that have been 


2 On a New Form of 

ascertained respecting their efficiency, and the reasons that 
have led scientific men to devote their attention to the dis- 
co very of some new and better method of propulsion. 

The paddle wheels act on the surface of the water where 
there is least resistance, and are liable to great irregularity of 
action in a rough sea. There is, in consequence, a con- 
siderable slip, or loss of velocity. The oblique action of the 
floats on the water also involves a loss of power. 

The indirect transmission of power from the piston to the 
paddle wheels through a ponderous crank engine involves 
an additional loss of power. 

The paddle wheels also act to great disadvantage when the 
vessel is either too heavily, or too lightly freighted. 

It has been estimated in a recent article in the New 
York Commercial Gazette that of the actual motive-power 
of the Collins steamers, not more than one-half is available 
in their speed. 

The screw also has many serious defects, and notwith- 
standing the great efforts that have been made to remove 
them it has hitherto proved inferior to the paddle wheels, 
especially when great velocity is required, or when there is 
great resistance to be overcome — as in head winds ; and it 
has, therefore, been chiefly used as an auxiliary in full-rigged 
ships and men-of-war. 

The screw has the advantage of working in deep water, 
where there is increased resistance ; but its oblique action 
on the water is its great source of weakness, and is one of 
those difficulties which cannot by any possible means be 

If we look to Nature as our guide, and take the feet of 
swimming birds, and the fins of fishes, as our model, we shall 
see that a perfect propeller should act wholly under water, 
as the screw, but, unlike the screw, the blades, or floats, of 
the propeller should act at right angles to the water. 

The problem to be solved, therefore, is to discover some 
simple and effectual means of feathering the floats of a pro- 
peller under water without loss of power, and of reversing 
their action when backward motion is required. 

Here it will, perhaps, be impossible in every respect to 
imitate the natural propellers of swimming birds and fishes, 
and especially that power which they possess of lessening 
the surface and resistance of their propellers in the act of 
feathering them ; but let the attempt, at least, be made to 
imitate this natural action as far as possible, and if it should 

Propeller for Steam Ships. 3 

be found that there is necessarily some loss of power in 
feathering the floats, under the most favourable conditions, 
this will at least admit of beiug greatly diminished by 
lengthening the stroke, and thus diminishing the frequency 
of the feathering. A perfect propeller should also admit of 
being connected directly to the piston-rod of the steam 
cylinder, so as to avoid the loss of power necessarily resulting 
from a heavy crank engine. 

This simple arrangement, however, would necessarily 
depend on a much greater speed of piston than that already 

A perfect propeller should also, when in action, have very 
little slip in the water, and when not in use it should either 
be capable of being readily-lifted out of the water, or it 
should offer no impediment to the motion of the ship under 
canvas. Such are the necessary conditions, as it appears to 
me, that we are to look for in any form of propeller that is 
likely to offer superior advantages to the paddle wheels and 

These conditions, I think, will be readily admitted to be 
theoretically essential, although it may be alleged that the 
inventive genius of scientific men has already been taxed to 
the utmost to discover such a form of propeller without 

But are we, on this account, to despair of all further im- 
provement in our modes of propulsion? If it is true that 
one-half, or a larger per centage, of the steam power in 
marine engines is lost, or unavailable, in its application to 
the paddle wheels, and that the screw for purposes of speed 
is in no respect superior to the paddle wheels, is it at all 
likely, with these means of propulsion, that we shall ever 
obtain a velocity commensurate with the requirements of 
modern civilization? 

Can we allow ourselves to believe that there is the same 
lavish waste of power in the mechanism which Nature has 
provided for the rapid movement of aquatic birds and fishes 
in their native element ? 

Past experience would seem to show that the larger the 
vessel the less is the proportionate resistance with the same 
lines and proportion of beam, and the greater the velocity 
with the same proportion of propelling power. 

Unless, therefore, we are prepared to maintain that the 
propelling power in fishes is much greater, in proportion to 
their size, than is required in steam ships to obtain the same 

B 2 

4 On a New Form of 

velocity, it is correct to infer that the propelling fins of fishes 
act much more effectively, and with less loss of power, than 
the paddle wheels and screw. 

If, therefore, we assume that there is no snch loss of power 
in Nature's machinery, surely we shall admit that by imita- 
ting Nature more closely than we have hitherto done we 
may yet succeed in discovering a mode of propulsion of 
greater power, and of more simple application, than the 
existing modes. 

I cannot but hope that there is a wide field yet open for 
improvement in marine propulsion, and that modern science 
will yet develop more simple and effective means of obtaining 
a greatly increased velocity in steam navigation. 

In accomplishing this desirable end, much remains to be 
done in improving the form and construction of ships them- 
selves, and in thus lessening their resistance to the water ; 
but it is no less true that a great increase of velocity would 
result from an improved mode of propulsion, by which the 
present waste of steam power would be avoided, and by 
which the whole power employed would be rendered effective 
for direct propulsion. 

It had long occurred to me that some more effective 
mechanism than the paddle wheels or screw might yet be 
discovered ; but it was only a few months since that I acci- 
dentally directed my attention to the subject, and it is with 
some diffidence that I now venture to bring under the notice 
of the Institute the model of a propeller upon a new prin- 
ciple, and whose object is to fulfil, as far as possible, the 
conditions which I have specified. 

If the principle of its action is correct, and if it shall be 
found to possess any advantages over the paddle wheels, or 
the screw, I shall be glad to think that I have contributed 
to the advancement of practical science. 

If, on the other hand, it shall be found to be unavailable, 
or inferior to other existing modes of propulsion, I shall, at 
all events, not regret that I have devoted some attention to a 
subject so interesting in a scientific point of view, and so 
important to the future commerce of the world. 

The construction of this propeller is very simple, and 
easily understood, and, whatever may be the result of its 
practical application, I am not without hope that, in the prin- 
ciple of its action, you will find that it approaches very nearly 
to the conditions which were stated theoretically to belong to 
a perfect propeller. 



Propeller for Steam Ships. 5 

Description of the Propeller (see plate).— The propeller 
consists of a shaft, A, with two arms, B, C, and two floats, 
D, E. The shaft is hollow, and, in the model, consists of an 
iron tube of one inch diameter, and five feet long ; the two 
arms are fixed on the shaft near its extremity, in the form of 
a semicircle, with the concavity outwards, and they terminate 
three inches from the shaft, in a hinge point, to which the 
floats are attached. The floats consist of thin sheet iron, and 
are of an oblong shape, being 9 inches in length, and 12 
inches in breadth. They are rounded or semicircular at 
the extreme end, and more rectangular at the opposite end, 
where they are hinged to the arms. From the hinge to the 
shaft there is a narrow projecting part, which rests on the 
shoulder F when the propeller is in action. From the con- 
struction of the joint the floats have an extensive motion, 
permitting them to feather either for forward or backward 
motion. The shoulder F is of brass, and being double, pre- 
sents the form of a cross, and is fitted into the extremity of the 
shaft by a screw, at the same time this brass shoulder is 
connected to a smaller iron tube inside the shaft. This ar- 
rangement is for the purpose of turning the brass shoulder, 
and°this is effected by means of the handle G, at the opposite 
end of the shaft, where there is also a stop, by which its 
motion is limited to a quarter of a circle. The shoulder in 
one position secures the floats for forward motion, and in the 
other position for backward motion. In forward motion, if 
the shoulder is turned while the floats are resting on it, their ^ 
action becomes reversed in the return stroke, and in the 
same way in backward motion, if the shoulder is turned while 
the floats are resting on it, the backward motion becomes 
changed to forward motion. 

To obtain uniformity of motion it will, under any circum- 
stances, be necessary to have two propellers. 

In large vessels it is proposed that the shafts of the pro- 
pellers should work in the dead wood in front of the stern- 
post, and that the dead wood should be extended to the 
length of the stroke of the propellers, two horizontal spaces, 
E and F, being prepared for their reception, and provided 
with guides above and below, the floats, on either side of the 
dead wood, working free of the ship. 

The shafts being thus secured, it is considered that the pro- 
pellers will be very little liable to be affected by heavy seas, 
probably much less than the paddles or screw. 

The propellers may be worked by two levers, and either 
one or two cylinders, as represented in Plate II. 

6 On a New Form of 

Length of stroke being essential for speed the levers must 
be proportionably long, but it is also necessary to multiply 
the speed of the piston by attaching the connecting-rod to 
the leVers proportionably near to the fulcrum. 

a b and c d represent the levers, a and c being the 
fulcra on which they move. The lever a b is extended 
to i for the purpose of connecting the action of the two 
cylinders, and concentrating the power of both cylinders 
upon each propeller alternately, by means of the connecting- 
rod i h. g and h represent the cylinders, and d e and bf 
the propellers. 

For the purpose of reversing the action of the propellers 
a moveable inclined plane will be fixed at each end of the 
stroke of the shaft within the ship, and when it is required 
to reverse the action the inclined plane will be placed in 
position to raise the projecting lever attached to the inner 
tube of the shaft. The rotation of the shoulder will thus be 
rapidly effected at the proper time without stopping the 

The first requirement in steam propulsion is speed, and at 
first sight the propeller which I have just described may seem 
only suited for low rates of velocity. 

In low-pressure marine engines the speed of the piston 
averages about 250 feet per minute. Any required speed in 
the propeller, however, could be obtained by means of levers, 
as shown above. 

But to obtain very high rates of speed with this propeller, 
or indeed with any other method of propulsion, it will be 
necessary to adopt high-pressure steam in marine engines. 

Hitherto steam vessels have been built, not exclusively for 
speed, but rather with the view of combining speed with 
carrying power. 

For "the purposes of modern mail communication speed 
ought to be almost exclusively aimed at, and when ships are 
built on this principle it will be necessary to abandon the 
ponderous low-pressure or condensing engines, and to adopt 
light high-pressure engines, similar in principle to those found 
so effective in locomotives on railways. 

The greater speed of the piston in high-pressure engines, 
which reaches 500 feet per minute, would add greatly to the 
efficacy and speed of this propeller. 

In applying steam power to give motion to the paddle 
wheels and screw, it is necessary to convert the reciprocating 
motion of the piston into a continuous rotatory motion, which 
is effected by means of the crank, and in direct-acting engines 

Propeller for Steam Ships. 7 

velocity is obtained by shortening the crank and the stroke 
of the piston and thereby increasing the number of strokes 
and revolutions of the engine. But this shortening of the 
crank greatly increases the friction and consequent loss of 
power. If the velocity of the piston could be increased to 
any required rate it would simply be necessary to connect 
the piston-rod to the shaft of this propeller, and the whole 
force of the steam would thus be available for direct propul- 
sion, without parallel motion, levers, or other gearing, and an 
immense saving would be effected in the weight of the 
engines. In the Terrible steam ^frigate of 1 847 tons, and 
800 horse-power, the contract weight of the engines was 212 
tons, and the weight of the paddle wheels 44 tons. 

There seems to me no sufficient reason why the present 
speed of the piston should not be greatly increased. If a great 
object is to be gained by an increased speed, a corresponding 
effort must be made to surmount the difficulties that may 
interpose, and there is no doubt, I think, that a greatly in- 
creased speed could be obtained by lengthening the cylinder, 
and using high pressure steam. 

Until this is accomplished it will be necessary to multiply 
the velocity of the piston, by means of levers, and to prevent 
any loss of power from the reciprocating motion of the levers, 
by means of the equalising air cylinder. The science of 
hydraulics in its application to propulsion is confessedly 
difficult to be understood, and no theory will be accepted as 
the present time that is not amply supported by experimental 
proof. Experiments properly conducted for testing the 
capablities of this propeller, and its comparative value, would 
involve a large expenditure of time and money, and I have 
therefore no experimental proof at present to offer in support 
of its alleged advantages. But the principle on which it is 
constructed is so obvious, and its construction is so simple, 
that careful theoretical deductions with regard to its practical 
application are not likely to deviate much from the truth. 

In the position where the propeller is intended to work, 
the water will have a slight retrograde motion, partly in- 
duced by the action of the propeller, and partly by the collapse 
of the water in the wake of the ship when in motion. 

At the commencement of each stroke, the floats will 
rapidly expand until they come to rest on the shoulder 
attached to the shaft, in which position the floats will be at 
right angles to the course of the ship, and will present the 
whole of their surface in the most favourable position for 

8 On a New Foi'm of 

acting against the water, and will so continue to the end of 
the stroke. However rapid the movement of the propeller, 
a certain time is required for the floats to get into this 
position, and therefore, especially if the floats have a large 
surface, there will be a slip, amounting probably in extreme 
cases to one foot, which it will be, perhaps, impossible to pre- 
vent ; at the end of the stroke, when the action of the pro- 
peller in the water ceases, the floats will be rapidly feathered 
by the forward movement of the ship). In the act of feather- 
ing there will be a certain resistance and loss of power from 
the sudden lateral displacement of the water, caused by the 
rotation of the floats upon their axes. 

The projecting neck of each float will be thrown forward, 
but, as it is very narrow, and may be made still more so than 
shown in the model, this portion of the float will offer no 
resistance of any consequence. 

The only loss of power, therefore, will arise from the back- 
ward and lateral movement of the body of the float. 

The backward movement of the float will rapidly take 
place at the end of the stroke, and before the commencement 
of the return stroke, the fixed extremity of the float being 
carried forward by the motion of the ship, while the free 
extremity is left behind. 

The float therefore will turn on its centre, the water being 
displaced partly forward and partly backward. A certain 
loss of power must result from this displacement which it 
would be difficult to estimate, but from the rapidity of the 
movement, and the extremity of the float being left un- 
restrained in its motion, it is difficult to see how the resist- 
ance could be great. 

During the lateral movement of the float the return stroke 
of the piston will begin to operate on it, and the act of 
feathering will be completed in a gradual manner during its 
rapid forward movement. The extent therefore of the 
lateral movement of the float will not correctly express the 
amount of displacement or the actual loss of power, the float 
being drawn obliquely rather than forced laterally into its 
position parallel with the shaft. Thus the actual lateral 
displacement of the water will be practically very much 
modified and diminished. 

In theory, therefore, the loss of power in feathering the 
floats would appear to be very small, and in a length of stroke 
of ten feet could scarcely exceed one foot, and supposing one 
tenth part of the stroke of the propeller to be ineffectual for 

Propeller for Steam Ships. 9 

propulsion, it does not follow that ten per cent, of the steam 
power is lost, unless there are very heavy engines to be kept 
in motion. If the floats are not instantly brought into posi- 
tion at the commencement of the stroke, it is because the 
steam cannot instantly re-enter the cylinder with sufficient 
rapidity to exert its full power on the piston, and if the power 
is not exerted it cannot be said to be lost. 

A propeller on a new principle must necessarily require 
important modifications in the construction both of ships and 
machinery, and if this new propeller should be found to 
possess any advantages over the paddle wheels and screw, it 
ought not to be objected that its adoption would render such 
modifications necessary. 

The principal alterations" required would be a greater 
length in the dead wood under the stern, with finer lines in 
the run, and a greater length of cylinder, with increased speed 
of piston. A stroke of piston of eight, ten, or twelve feet, 
with a corresponding increase in the velocity of the piston, 
would suffice for all purposes of speed. 

Great length and fine lines have added greatly to the speed 
of our modern clippers, and in the new American steam-ship 
C. Vanderbilt, the cylinders are ninety inches in diameter, 
and the stroke of the piston is twelve feet ; while the leviathan 
steam-ship now building at Blackwall will have four cylinders 
six feet in diameter and eighteen feet long. 

It may be objected to this propeller that reciprocating 
motion with long levers is not suited for marine engines. 

. All propulsion is effected by means of levers. The floats 
of the paddle wheels are connected to the shaft by means of 
levers, and the blades of the screw are equally to be regarded 
as levers, the only difference being that these levers have a 
continuous circular motion imparted to them by the crank, 
and that they act in the water, whereas I propose to impart 
a reciprocating motion to the propeller by means of levers 
acting within the ship. 

A single lever of great length, with a reciprocating motion 
of great velocity, would not act securely or steadily in a 
rough sea, but if the lever is composed of two separate 
parallel pieces, three feet apart, and firmly connected together 
by cross heads at both ends, it will move as securely and 
steadily on its fulcrum or shaft as the paddle wheels on their 
shaft, and if the velocity of the piston can be increased to 
800 or 1,200 feet per minute, for all ordinary purposes the 

10 On a New Form of 

propeller might be connected directly to the piston-rod with- 
out levers. 

I shall not here consider what loss of power, if any, results 
from the use of the crank. It is obvious that the friction 
must be very great when the crank is short, as it necessarily 
must be to obtain speed, both with the paddle wheels and 

By the proposed arrangement the whole effective force of 
the steam is more simply, and more immediately, and more 
directly expended in direct propulsion. 

If, however, the proposed levers be found objectionable 
for marine purposes, the reciprocating motion of the propel- 
lers might be obtained through the medium of a wheel and 
crank with continuous motion, — the connecting rods of the 
two shafts being attached to opposite ends of the diameter 
of the wheel. 

But it appears to me that no object is to be gained by 
employing the continuous rotatory motion of the crank, 
while the disadvantages arising from the great length and 
oblique action of the connecting rods would outweigh any 
advantages which continuous motion might possess in other 
respects. If therefore, levers, are objectionable, the recipro- 
cating rectilinear motion of the propellers may be effectively 
obtained by means of toothed wheels. The shaft of each 
propeller being provided with teeth, both on its upper and 
under surface, a large toothed wheel would be placed cen- 
trally between the shafts, and a reciprocating motion com- 
municated to the wheel would give an alternate reciprocating 
motion to the propellers. 

To secure the shafts of the propellers in their position, 
with the least amount of friction, two toothed wheels of 
smaller diameter would be required, — the one to work into 
the teeth on the upper surface of the upper shaft, the other 
into the teeth on the under surface of the lower shaft. 

Any required length of stroke would be obtained by 
means of a multiplying wheel, to which a reciprocating 
motion is given by a connecting rod and crank. 

The diagram in Plate III. will illustrate the relative 
position of the wheels, and the shafts of the propellers. 

Toothed gearing has been frequently employed to multiply 
the velocity of the screw, and although objectionable from 
its liability to derangement, it has important advantages 
in combining economy of space with great length of stroke. 

Propeller for Steam Ships. 11 

Many novel inventions have of late years, been proposed 
as a substitute for our pi-esent mode of propulsion. 

The principle upon which many of these are based is the 
supposed advantage of confining the water that is to be acted on 
with the object of securing a better hold on the water, and 
some of these methods have appeared to be at least equal in 
practical effect to the paddle wheels and screw ; but there is 
reason to believe that whatever is gained by confining the 
water is lost by the great lateral pressure and friction of 
the water in the tubes and confining cylinders, and the 
amount of propelling force is to be measured, not by the 
hydraulic pressure, but by the volume and velocity of the 
water put in motion. 

There seems, therefore, no sound reason why a propelling 
float of suitable dimensions, acting in deep water, and at 
right angles to the longitudinal axis of the ship, should not 
give the greatest available amount of propelling power, in 
proportion to the steam power employed. 

If such be the fact, all future progress in steam propulsion 
must depend on the discovery of an effectual method of fea- 
thering propelling floats in deep water, without loss of power. 

The advantages claimed for this new propeller are — 

1. That it acts wholly under water, and may be placed 

at a considerable depth, where the water has an 
increased resistance. 

2. There is very little loss of power in feathering the 

floats, or in working the propeller. 

3. It may be connected with the piston rod, without the 

use of the crank. 

4. The action of the floats may be easily reversed, with- 

out stopping the pistons. 

5. With high-pressure steam, and increased speed of 

piston, and length of stroke, this propeller might 
be worked without gearing of any kind, and is 
apparently adapted for high rates of velocity. 

6. Its action is more in accordance with that [of the 

natural propellers of birds and fishes than either 
the paddle wheels or screw. 

7. The machinery necessary for working the propeller 

will be more simple, and much less weighty, and 
therefore much less expensive, than that hitherto 
employed in steam navigation. 

12 On the Lyre Bird. 

8. This propeller seems particularly adapted as an 

auxiliary power in merchant vessels, and would 

not require, like the screw, to be lifted out of the 
water when not in use. 

Art. II. — On the "Lyre Bird." (Menura Superba.) By J. 
Wood Beilbt, Esq., Gipps Land. Communicated <by 
the Honorary Secretary. 

[Read to the Institute 4th February, 1857.] 

About 5th July last, while passing through scrub on the 
margin of the Aar, or Tangel River flowing into the 
Glengarry, or Latrobe, Gipps Land, the nest of the Lyre 
bird was discovered in an opening of a few square feet by 
the hen bird leaving it in alarm. It was found to contain 
one egg, which subsequently, after leaving the nest undis- 
turbed, in hopes of the hen returning to it, which she did 
not, was found to be fresh. Other nests similarly occupied 
were found during the same month. The nests are about 
two and a half to three feet in height, built upon the ground. 
The under structure is composed of layers of sticks, interlaced 
together to the height of 18 to 22 inches. Above this is the 
nest proper, — interiorly a very soft layer of dry grass, leaves, 
moss, and down from the birds, arched over, and completely 
concealed with a network of twisted vines, grass, and moss ; 
the entrance to which is by an opening large enough to 
admit the hen bird on one side, rounded at top, from which 
a veil, or curtain, of the long fibrous moss found growing 
and hanging in long festoons from leaning trees in scrubs 
and fern gullies, falls, so as to completely conceal the opening 
when the female is sitting, or has left her nest. The cock 
bird cannot assist in the task of incubation, as proved by the 
fact that the lyre tail could not get in, and if outside would 
frustrate the design of concealment. The whole nest is so 
artfully constructed of materials of uniform colour, and bears 
so close a resemblance, exteriorly, to the heaps of drift, or 
decaying rubbish, accumulating everywhere in the scrub, 
that, unless the bird be scared out of it by a passer by, it 
would scarcely attract the investigation of the most obser- 
vant. The female is said to lay but one egg, but from having 

On the Lyre Bird. 13 

found shells of more near a nest repaired for use tills season, 
and the birds being observed to roost in families occa- 
sionally, I am inclined to think that probably the hen may 
lay a second egg, and then sit close, and thus remain undis- 
covered. The eggs are as long as a large duck's egg, but 
thicker. Colour a dappled black, like smooth unpolished 
black marble, with greyish veins between the rounded black 
clouding. The hen appears to desert her nest whenever 
discovered. The young run on the ground, and hastily con- 
ceal themselves at' the slightest alarm, very soon after leaving 
the egg. At pairing season, in May and June, and early in 
July "he male birds are very assiduous in calling the hens to 
them, and may be heard chiefly early in the morning, and near 
sun-down, uttering their harsh gutteral cry of Queeuk, queeuk, 
accompanied by a loud clear whistling, reminding one of 
some of the notes of the English black-bird. They are 
expert mocking birds, and are often heard imitating the cries 
of the birds and animals familiar to them,— such as cockatoos 
of various kinds, pigeons, parrots, crows, magpies, &c. I 
have heard one imitate the howl of a wild dog, and others 
the sharpening of a saw, hammering, and other sounds made 
by carpenters, a few clays after they had opportunity of hear- 
ing such sounds for the first time. While engaged in mocking, 
the bird is usually burrowing in loose soil (as our domestic 
fowls do in ashes), and meanwhile gives vent to such a 
strange variety of imitations, that I have fancied several 
birds°must be joining in them, until I crept to the spot and 
became a witness to its sport. Individual birds, or pairs, are 
often in long possession exclusively of certain spots, and may 
be identified by their proficiency in the imitation of particu- 
lar sounds. They are difficult to approach to shoot during 
the day, except where man is unknown to them, and are 
scared by the slightest sound. Specimens are most easily 
obtained by ascertaining (by the droppings beneath) the trees 
upon which they usually roost,— usually a bushy blackwood or 
wattle about twenty feet high, and shooting them at dusk or 
in moonlight. They will then not unfrequentlys it stupidly 
awaiting a second shot, if the shooter does not move till 
he has brought down his second bird. They appear to live 
chiefly upon worms, grubs, and the white roots of couch 
grass, and some other plants and grasses growing in the loose 
rich earth common to the scrubs. Their long claws are well 
adapted for scraping these up. In places frequented by these 
birds there are numerous smooth topped rounded hillocks, 

14 Observations on a Mirage. 

three or four feet across, of loose soil, freed from all roots of 
scrub or grass, — the history and use of which are at present 
unknown to me. Although a very shy bird naturally, at- 
tempts to domesticate it by rearing the young under a common 
fowl have succeeded sufficiently to induce further efforts, 
with greater care for the safe custody of the chicks. 

A nest of the Lyre-tailed Pheasant will be forwarded to 
the Museum when an opportunity occurs for its transmission, 
by land or sea, from this presently inaccessible locality. 

Art. III. — On the Phenomena attending an Interesting Case 
of Mirage. By Professor Wilson, M.A., Melbourne 

[Communicated to the Institute 4th February, 1857.] 

On Sunday, 18th January last, about a quarter before two 
o'clock, I observed an interesting case of Mirage on the 
Sydney road. I was standing about twenty yards from the 
south-east entrance to the Royal Park, looking towards 
Brunswick. The road here is three chains wide, very dusty, 
bounded on the left by the trees of the Royal Park, and on 
the right by those of the Prince's Park ; at the farther end, 
distant about a mile and a quarter, the " Sarah Sands Hotel," 
is visible and some trees with a well-marked outline. On 
the day in question the house and trees appeared to rise out 
of a lake, brilliantly illuminated by the sun, and in parts 
slightly agitated by the wind, but not so as to interfere with 
a very distinct inverted image of the house and trees formed 
by reflexion in the seeming water. 

My position was at the foot of a slight rise in the road, 
the summit of which, at the distance of a few yards, was 
nearly on a level with the eye. The sandy surface of the 
ground was much heated by the sun, and at the same time a 
cool south wind was blowing briskly, so that the ah-, heated 
and rarified by contact with the ground, was rapidly cleared 
off by the cool wind, leaving only a thin film of rarified air 
along the surface of the ground. The rays of light from the 
sky, and objects at a distance of more than a mile incident 
on the surface of this rarer medium at nearly a right angle, 
suffered reflexion in a manner very analogous to that known 
as total internal reflexion, and thus produced the inverted 

On the Cestracion Philippi {Port Jackson Shark). 15 

images, and the appearance of water. On advancing up the 
ascent, so as to raise the eye, and thus diminish the angle of 
incidence of the rays which entered it, the lake contracted, 
appeared discontinuous, as if studded with islands, and dis- 
appeared. It reappeared again on placing the eye in the first 

The same appearance was observed on the following Sun- 
day, under similar circumstances. 

The phenomenon is a well-known one ; but every instance 
of its ocurrence in a locality where it has not been previously 
observed is worthy of record, and the collection ' of trivial 
scientific facts is one of the objects of a scientific society. 

Art. IV. — On the Cestracion Philippi (Port Jackson Shark), 
Trigonia and Terebratula of the Australian Seas. By SiZAR 
Elliott, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute 4th March, 1857.] 

This fish belongs to the Placoid order, or Sharks, (by the 
arrangement of M. Agassiz), and forms the only living example 
of the family of Cestracions (Cestraciontid<e), the members 
of which are distinguished from all other sharks by having the 
teeth flattened,' and formed for grinding. Numerous genera of 
this family are abundant in the Mesozoic rocks of Europe, and 
all Naturalists and Geologists seemed hitherto to have been of 
opinion that they abound also in the Palaeozoic Rocks ; but 
Professor M'Coy, in his last work on the " British Palaeozoic 
Fossils," proves that the succession of the teeth in the 
Mountain Limestone Genus Cochliodus (which was hitherto 
supposed to be a fossil-shark's jaw of the type of cestracion, 
and which furnished the key to Agassiz for grouping all the 
Palaeozoic blunt fish-teeth of the Palaeozoic Rocks with the 
Cestracions), was from below upwards, and that they were 
not on a rotating membrane, succeeding each other from 
behind forwards, so that, according to Professor M'Coy, the 
supposed Palaeozoic cestracions belong in fact to the bony 
fishes, and not to the sharks at all: in other words M. Agassiz 
is in error in grouping the blunt fish-teeth of the mountain 
limestone with the blunt fish-teeth of the Mesozoic Rocks ; 
the former having their teeth progressing from behind for- 
wards, the latter from below upwards. 

However the fact of greatest interest remains of the great 

16 On the Cestr -action Philippi (Port Jackson Shark). 

abundance of the true Cestracion fishes in all the Mesozoic 
Rocks, particularly in the Oolites, and that the only living 
representative of the family inhabits the Australian Seas, an 
example of which is now on the table. This specimen was 
procured in December last, from a fishing station near Mor- 
dialloc, about fourteen miles from this city, and is called by the 
fishermen a Groper. From the close proximity of the mouth 
to the tip of the head it is well calculated for rooting, while 
the teeth can bruise or grind such Molluscs and Crustacea 
as may come in its way with facility ; but I should conceive 
that sea weed would form the principal portion of its food. 

In the same rocks in Europe the Trigonia ( J'rigonos, tri- 
angular,) abounds ; shells forming a peculiar family (remark- 
able for the pair of diverging sulcated teeth) ; of which 
also the only living type is found in our seas. There are 
only two species of this shell well known, T. Margaritacea 
and T. Pectinata. The present specimens belong to the 
Society's collection, and were dredged in the harbour of 
Port Jackson, New South Wales, in about sixteen feet water, 
at low tide, from off the tail of a bank leading into deep water ; 
the bottom was composed principally of dead broken shells and 
sand, the effect of the under current or drift, mixed with which 
the Trigonias were found, and could easily be groped out 
by the shark now under consideration. I believe they are 
to be met with only in this locality in the harbour. The 
interior of the shell is highly iridescent Mother-o'-Pearl. 
They are much prized by collectors. There ar.e upwards of 
twenty fossil species, but they are not found below the Lias 

Terebratulas, ( Terebratus, bored,) agreeing in generic cha- 
racter with the living Australian ones, also abound in the 
Oolite Rocks of Europe, but are not so interesting as the 
above, because examples (though rare) are found in the seas 
of all parts of the world, and in all the rock formations from 
the Silurian to the Tertiary inclusive. 

The specimens before you were also procured in the har- 
bour of Port Jackson, from under rocks on the borders of 
the harbour, by inserting the arm into the cavities, where 
they can be detected hanging by a short fleshy tendon 
passing through the hole in the larger and upper valve. I 
mention this fact from the circumstance that Lamarck and 
others consider that, from the locality of the Fossil species of 
this genus, these shells may be presumed to inhabit the sea 
at a great depth; and Professor Owen remarks that the 

On a New Mineral from M'lvor. 17 

Trigonia and Terebratula are still in existence, which fed 
the fishes of the Oolitic era. From the locality from whence 
the present specimens were obtained I should not conceive 
they are sought after by the Port Jackson Shark in such 
shallow water, and am not aware (other than the fact that 
they are discovered in a fossil state in the same localities) 
that they are, or were, consumed as food by the fish now 
under consideration. They have a curious kind of internal 
skeleton, as it may be termed, consisting of a flattened calca- 
reous loop, with other pieces diverging from it, which are con- 
sidered to be supports to the animal's body. There are sixteen 
recent, and numerous fossil species. 

The oldest fossil Mammalia are in the Oolite, also forming 
peculiar genera, belonging to the insectivorous Marsupialia, 
such as live now in Australia only. 

Art. V. — On a New Mineral from M'lvor. By R. Brough 
Smyth, Esq., C.E., F.G-.S. 

[Read before the Institute, 4th March, 1857.] 

The mineral described in the following analysis was for- 
warded to me by Philip Chauncey, Esq., District Surveyor, 
Heathcote. It occurs commonly in the quartz veins in small 
quantities, and is believed by the diggers to be Molybdenum. 
As my duties at present prevent my Mineralogical studies, 
I handed the specimens to George Ulrich, Esq., who has 
prepared the analysis which I now submit to the members of 
the Philosophical Institute.* 

" The mineral is of a steel-grey colour, with metallic lustre, 
opaque, brittle; the fracture isconchoidal; the streak-powder 
dark-grey, or black; hardness 2*5 — 3; spec. grav. (?) 

" Before the blowpipe, on charcoal, this ore smelts very 
easily to a metallic globule, with a sort of boiling motion, 
emitting at the same time dense white fumes, with a weak 
smell of sulphurous acid. Close to the mineral the charcoal 
bears a deep yellow crust, which gradually changes into white ; 
then comes a small uncoloured ring, and again a small blueish 

* Mr. Ulrich was not aware of my intention to publish these results until 
after his analysis was published, or his examination would have been more 
complete.— R. B. S..,, 11th July, 1857. 

18 On a New Mineral from M'lvor. 

white crust. This latter fume can be driven away by the 
reducing flame, turning greenish blue ; the yellow crust disap- 
pears with an azure blue shine. 

" According to these tests the mineral ought to contain sul- 
phur, antimony, and lead. To make, however, more certain 
of it, the powdered mineral was mixed with soda, and again 
brought on charcoal before the reducing flame. The results 
were fine lead-like globules, with a yellow fume close to 
them, and a thin bluish-white one further off. As the me- 
tallic globules appeared rather brittle, they were fused toge- 
ther, and (to take up the lead) brought into contact with a 
small portion of boracic acid: the reducing flame produced 
herewith red pearls of metallic copper, clearly distinguishable 
on the edge of the slag. 

" The phosphorsalt bead received from the mineral a fine 
emerald-green colour, identifying the presence of copper. 

" In the open test-tube the heated mineral smelts very easily, 
causing a white, not fusible, sublimate not far up the tube, 
and emitting strong fumes of sulphurous acid, which redden 
blue litmus paper put in at the unheated end of the tube. 
In the half closed tube the mineral smelts, and sublimates 
rings of greyish white and white colour ; no smell of sulphu- 
rous acid perceptible. This latter trial in the tube leaves 
now some doubt of the presence of antimony, or at least of 
such a portion of it as to bear an essential part in the chemi- 
cal composition of the ore as a sulphide. To come to a cer- 
tain result, however, the ore was brought together with a 
small piece of iron-wire in a cylindrical hole on the charcoal, 
and a mixture of borax and soda, in proportion of 1-2, was added 
as a covering, and the whole mass covered for a while with a 
good reducing flame. The regulus of lead with antimony 
(the sulphur having formed a slag with the iron) was taken 
out of the slag, and, on another piece of charcoal, brought 
into contact with boracic acid. The reducing flame produced 
in this way again small reguli of copper, surrounded only by 
.a very thin white fume, — doubtless oxide of antimony. 

" By way of these tests, and according to Plattner's experi^ 

ments, the ore is cuproplumbit, Pb 2 + Cu., with a small 
quantity of antimony, or it is a sort of Bournonite; the 
components of which are commonly given quite in another 

" The qualitative analysis gave the following results : — 
" The finely powdered ore dissolved in nitric acid, with a 
blueish green colour, leaving a heavy white residue and par- 
ticles of yellow sulphur suspended in the solution. After 

On a New Mineral from M'lvor. 19 

filtering, the residue (freed of the flocky sulphur) proved to 
be sulph. lead, with a trace of antimony. Here the fact 
was to be observed, that after the chief part of the solution had 
passed through the filter, and water was poured on it for 
washing the residue, the fluid received a milky appearance. 
As this is a proof of the presence of either antimony or 
bismuth, the white milky precipitate was filtered, and 
brought together with tartaric acid, it dissolved very easily, 
and gave thus a doubtless proof of the absence of bismuth, 
and the presence of antimony. 

" The filtered fluid was now acted upon by sulphohydric 
acid; a black precipitate resulted, which, after careful 
washing, was brought together with sulphodydride of am- 
monia, and heated. As no perceptible change in colour or 
quantity of the precipitate took place, the fluid was, however, 
filtered, and chlorohydrip acid added to it, the forthcoming 
greyish orange-coloured precipitate fstill in very small 
quantity) proved now the presence of antimony without a 
doubt. The black precipitate, dissolved in nitric acid, to a 
green solution (Cu.), by parting with flocky sulphur. Sul- 
phuric acid caused now a white heavy precipitate of sulphate 
of lead ; and ammonia in excess, added to the liquor (filtered 
from pulphate of lead) imparted a light blue colour — no 
precipitate — testing so the presence of copper, however small 
in quantity, and the absence of bismuth and cadmium. 

" The fluid, filtered from the black precipitate, caused by 
sulphuretted hydrogen, was mixed with ammonia, and chlo- 
ride of ammonia, till it rendered red litmus paper blue, and 
then sulphohydride of ammonia added and no precipitate 
appearing proved the absence of iron, nickel, and cobalt. 

" The final result of this qualitative anaylsis can now be 
stated as follows : — 

" Lead and sulphur form the predominant components ; 
copper and antimony are present in small quantities. 

" As the specimen of the ore was very small, and much 
impregnated with quartz, a larger and purer piece, perhaps 
with crystals or cleavage observable, would be very satisfac- 
tory, and enable one to make an exact quantitative analysis to 
establish the fact of its being a new mineral, which most of 
the results of the above recorded experiments tend to. 

" It need not be added that a trace of silver is not excluded 
by this analysis, and could in a purer piece be easily found 
by smelting, and afterwards cupellating with a portion of 
test lead. Most of these minerals contain a trace of silver." 



Art. VI. — On the Octoclinis Macleayana — a new 
Australian Pine. Described by Dr. Ferdinand 
Mueller, Colonial Botanist of Victoria. 

[Read before the Institute 2nd March, 1857.] 

Ever since the progress of horticulture has been a scale for 
testing the advancement of civilisation, and therefore since 
time immemorial, the noble trees of the pine family have 
been regarded with a favour equally great and deserved. 
New explorations have added new forms, competing as gar- 
den ornaments with those already reared, and thus the 
interest for these plants has rather increased than diminished. 

I would recall to your recollection the veneration of the 
ancients for the sacred cedar of Lebanon, recall the feelings 
which have cheered our own hearts in seeing the unaltered 
grandeur of the pine-forests of our native land at those times 
when nearly Flora's whole empire is buried under snow" ; I 
would recall all the impressions of those who glanced over the 
abnormal yet stately Kauri pines, the magnificent Deodars, 
the strange Ginkos, or our incomparable Araucarias, the 
Bunya Bunya with its colossal fruit ; I would remind you 
lastly of the discovery of Wellingtonia, that giant in the 
empire of vegetation, now venerated as the highest and 
imperishable monument of a late hero of the British nation. 

I scarcely need apologize when I direct your attention to 
one indeed of the finest denizens of this tribe of plants, since 
the generality of them have always been admired for their 
unfading foliage, their symmetrical and graceful forms, their 
perfect shade, — admired no less by the philosopher for' 
their association with antiquity and history ; esteemed by all 
for multifarious and universal utility. 

I point at present to an ornamental tree, peculiar but to a 
small area of this country, a tree hitherto unknown to botanists 
and horticulturists abroad, and interesting particularly to us 
here as bearing the celebrated name of one of the most 
zealous promoters of natural sciences in Australia, the name 
of its discoverer, William S. M'Leay. 

The noble tree which forms the subject of this memoir, 
occurs on forest slopes at Tacking Point of Port Macquarie, 
and received in Mr. Shepherd's meritorious catalogue of 

a New Australian Pine. 21 

Sydney Garden plants the name Leichhardtia Macleayana.* 
But in accordance with the unalterable rules in systematic 
phytology, this appellation, intended*, to form a renewed 
generous,, acknowledgment of the fruitful labours of an 
immortal ' man, has to give way to the priority of a more 
modest yet not less valuable botanical monument erected by 
the great and venerable Eobt. Brown to the memory of my 
lamented countryman.f 

In the newest monography of coniferae, published by the 
late Professor Endlicher,} the view of Mirbel has been 
adopted, which separates the Sandarach-pines of Australia, 
(the Cypress-pines of the colonists), principally on account of 
a six valved fruit, as Frenela from the typical Mediterranean 
Callitris, which genus is characterised by a tetramerous 
strobilus. M'Leay's pine therefore obtains in consonance 
with these views, likewise generic rank, as it differs from 
both Callitris and Frenela in an octamerous fruit ; and this 
generic character is moreover supported habitually by a 
much stronger, more rigid, and quaternary development of 
the leaves. This quaternary disposition of the leaves dis- 
plays beautifully the symmetry in the numerical development 
of flowers and leaves, reduced to half the number of the 
fruit divisions, -and harmonizes therefore in proportion to the 
number of these organs in Callitris, Frenela et Actinostrobus, 
although quaternary leaves are actually without parallel 
hitherto in Coniferae, some species excepted of Ephedra, a 
genus otherwise extremely different. 

Admitting thus our pine into generic rank, the continental 
Australian coniferas exhibit now the following array of 
genera: — Frenela, Actinostrobus, Octoclinis, Araucaria, 
Dammara, Podocarpus, Ephedra. 

Octoclinis. — Flowers monoecious ; male ones : a terminal 
ovate amentum ; stamens many, four in a whorl, imbricated ; 
filaments very short, bearing a peltate, scaly round acuminate 
connectivum, on which the three globose anther-cells are 
inserted; anther-cells opening lengthwise. Female flow- 
ers Strobile pyramidate-globose, octogonous, slightly 

compressed, eight-valved. ' Valves woody, of unequal 

* T. W. Shepherd's Catalogue of Plants cultivated at Sydney, 1851, p. 15. 
+ Leichhardtia Australis, an asclepiadeous climber, conf. B.Brown's appen- 
dix to Start's Central Australia, vol. II. p. 81. (1849.) 
| Endlicher Synopsis Coniferaruni, Sangalli, 1847. 

22 On the Octoclinis Macleayana, 

length, alternately shorter, all below the apex mucro- 
nate. Central columna very short, pyramidal. Seeds 
numerous, much smaller than the valves, erect, inserted to 
the lower part and to the base of the valves, a few of the 
lower ones fertile, the rest sterile, amorphous and wingless. 
Fertile seeds nearly ovate, somewhat compressed and angu- 
late, on the inner side nearly wingless, on the outer side 
winged. Indumentum crust-like. Embryo lying in a fleshy 
albumen, consisting of two cotyledons and a superior cylin- 
drical radicule. 

A tree of eastern extra-tropical Australia, with quaternary- 
verticillate always linear subulate triangular spreading per- 
sistent decurrent leaves, without dorsal glands. 

Octoclinis Macleayana. — At Tacking Point of Port Mac- 
quarie, discovered by W. S. Macleay, Esq. 

A tall pyramidal tree with dense foliage, and spreading 
scattered branches. Branchlets densely foliated, scattered. 
Leaves compressed, varying in length generally between i 
— J" in their free part, ^ — 1'" broad, decurring to the next 
verticill, and alterning with the leaves of it, the middle nerve 
in age prominent, terminating in a very short mucro. Male 
amenta, 2 — 4'" long on a very short peduncle, surrounded at 
the base with four ovate-lanceolate, acuminate short bracts. 
Connectivum about 1'" long. Female flowers as yet un- 
known. Stroboli at the average one inch long, flat at the 
base, short stalked. Valves always alternately somewhat, 
in many instances conspicuously, shorter ; their dorsal cuspis 
short green recurved. Seeds, at least the sterile ones, by 
mutual pressure of indeterminate form ; fertile ones nearly 
| of an inch long, with a brown testa ; the inner margin 
wingless, or with a very narrow wing, the wing of the outer 
margin resting between the valves, sometimes broader than 
the nucleus, sometimes only below the middle developed. 

In a retrospective view over the above characters it will 
be observed that the genus Octoclinis approaches amongst its 
allied cupressinous genera in foliage next to some Juniperi ; 
in disparity of valves and number of seeds to Frenela ; in 
number of cotyledons to Actinostrobus and Callistris; but 
differs, as already mentioned, from all in quaternary develop- 
ment of flowers and leaves, and in an octamerous fruit. 

Sydney Botanical Gardens, 
February, 1857. 


Hamel & Lochei imjg 

22 On the Octodinis Macleayana, 

lengthy alternately shorter, all below the apex mucro- 
nate. Central columna very short, pyramidal. Seeds 
numerous, much smaller than the valves, erect, inserted to 
the lower part and to the base of the valves, a few of the 


Explanation of the Plate. 

1. Male Amentum. 

2. Male Flower. 

3. Anther- Cells. 

4. Pollen-Grains. 

5. Fruit- Valves. 

6. Wingless Sterile Seeds. 

7. Winged Sterile Seeds. 

8. Fertile Seed. 

9. Transverse Section of Fertile Seed. 
10. Embryo. 

All more or less Magnified. 


allied cupressinous genera in foliage next to some J uniperi ; 
in disparity of valves and number of seeds to Frenela ; in 
number of cotyledons to Actinostrobus and Callistris; but 
differs, as already mentioned, from all in quaternary develop- 
ment of flowers and leaves, and in an octamerous fruit. 

Sydney Botanical Gardens, 
February, 1857. 

JjiMjjBeiiker del 1 &Mi. Hamel & Locher imp 


Art. VII. — On the Murray River Cod, with particulars of 
Experiments instituted for introducing this Fish into the 
River Yarra-Yarra. By Edward Wilson, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute 8th April, 1857.] 

Mr. President and Gentlemen, — It is with some diffi- 
dence that I present myself before the members of the 
Philosophical Institute, to read a short paper descriptive of a 
little experiment which I have lately been making for the 
introduction of the fish known as the Cod-perch of the 
Murray into the river Yarra. I am no naturalist, nor scien- 
tific in any other way; my pursuits having long lain in very 
different directions. These remarks, then, must be considered 
as a mere popularly treated sketch of a scheme which I have 
good hopes has been tolerably successful, and which, if suc- 
cessful, will be thought to contain, I trust, some elements of 

For a long time I have been impressed with an idea of the 
singular disproportion between the endless variety and lavish 
profusion of the natural productions of the earth, and their 
unequal and even eccentric distribution. In a newly settled 
country like this, the consideration of this subject is particu- 
larly important. Our progress in equalizing the distribution 
of natural productions has not been altogether unsatisfactory, 
but I think that our comparative success ought rather to 
have the effect of urging us to new and more vigorous endea- 
vours, than of leading us to become contented with what has 
been already done. How few of the present productions of 
the Colony, upon which we are mainly dependent for our 
comfort and enjoyment, were placed here naturally, and 
without the special interposition of man ! And yet how 
astonishingly successful their introduction has been ! How 
contracted the list of indigenous productions ! How large 
the catalogue of those already at our service ! In glancing 
down the list it is worth while to test their respective useful- 
ness by a constant consideration of the question, how far we 
should now be inclined to part with any one of them. "We 
think little of them, probably, now we have them. Let us 
consider how we should get on without them. The sheep, 
for instance, is not indigenous ; and yet what would be the 
effect upon this colony of the entire annihilation of the 
sheep ? The ox is not indigenous, yet how should we recon- 

24 On the Murray River Cod. 

cile ourselves to be deprived of beef, or milk ? The horse is 
not indigenous, yet how could we now spare that useful 
servant ? The dog is not indigenous, nor the pig, the goat, 
the cat, the domestic fowl, the common pigeon, the duck, 
goose, and turkey. Strike one of these from our list now, 
and we should to a greater or less extent miss it. 

And I may here remark that we are, perhaps, inclined to 
be guided too much by considerations of profit in many of 
these things, rather than by considerations of the enjoyments 
afforded by them irrespective of those of a pecuniary nature. 
We speak respectfully of the sheep for instance, because we 
are assured by our statistical friends that it enables us to 
produce an export of £1,200,000 to £1,500,000 annually. 
But if the sheep were taken entirely from us, the loss would 
be but imperfectly represented by a failure of exports to the 
amount I have named. What would become of the employ- 
ment afforded to thousands by the attention required by this 
animal? How should we miss the endless variety of roast 
and boiled, and baked, the joints and chops and savory stews, 
which form no item of the export? 

And if we pan enumerate such a list of, imported luxuries 
as the above in the animal kingdom, we have amongst our 
vegetable production a still wider range. How should we 
get on without our wheat, barley, oats, maize, potatoes, tur- 
nips, cabbage^ lettuce, carrots, peas, beans, beet, and a hun- 
dred other things not in any instance indigenous, and yet 
successfully introduced, thoroughly established, and exten- 
sively used and appreciated amongst us ? Then the apple, 
pear, peach, plum, grape, mulberry, cherry, quince, apricot, 
gooseberry, currant, melon, strawberry, raspberry, and fig ! 
What a world of wholesome enjoyment is contained in such 
a list as this ! What if we were called upon to resign all 
these, and fall back upon the native quandong and the little 
yew-berry which goes by the name of the native cherry ! 

What I wish particularly to urge is, that, having done so 
much as we undoubtedly have done in so short a time, we 
should be encouraged to still more energetic efforts. With 
a virgin country, an Italian climate, and British institutions 
to lend force and intelligence to our endeavours, and with a 
most extensive commerce ramifying over the whole globe, I 
hold the very highest conceptions of the capability of this 
country for very vast and varied improvements and additions, 
and I wish to see every possible step taken to give scope to 
its utmost possibilities, and that without the loss of one un- 

On the Murray River Cod. 25 

necessary day. In looking abroad over the earth, Nature 
seems to have been lavish in the supply of her various gifts, 
but singularly capricious in their adjustment ; or rather she 
has properly and kindly left to man the interesting and agree- 
able task of supplementing her own efforts, of discovering 
by experiment and the action of his own intellect how far 
the gift itself may be multiplied, extended, and improved. 

I must here confess my profound sorrow that no Govern- 
ment that this Colony has yet possessed has shown much 
inclination to do anything to further or assist this interesting 
process. It has long since been incessantly urged upon them 
that agriculture should be made a State department, and that 
experimental farms and gardens should be established, in 
which every plant, as well as every animal, that could possi- 
bly be found suitable to the colony should be fairly tested, 
and introduced by direct contact to the inhabitants at large. 
I trust this will not long be so. It is a duty, whether in our 
individual or collective capacity, to endeavour to multiply 
sources of comfort, enjoyment, and profit ; and I cannot con- 
ceive why a duty at once so sacred and so agreeable should 
be so frequently ignored by those who have the power most 
signally to serve us. 

It was by convictions such as these that I have been led to 
endeavour to reduce to practice what I think must be 
allowed to be unquestionably true in theory. We are rather 
given to talk too much, and do too little ; and I confess that I 
have long yearned to secure practical effect to what, without 
individual action, is rather too apt to dwindle into resultless 
theory. People in this Colony have been talking, ever since 
I came to it, of introducing the alpaca. The last news from 
Adelaide acquaints us with the fact that, while we have 
talked, a Mr. Haigh of that city has acted, and has just suc- 
ceeded in importing four healthy animals of this kind. Per- 
haps the example may be of service. But I for one must 
confess my little appreciation of the man of many words and 
little deeds. 

If any of those I now address will take boat at Princes 
Bridge, and pull up as far as the river is navigable, they will 
observe on most fine days, but particularly in the morning 
and evening, and on holidays, an almost continuous line of 
anglers, of all sorts, sizes, and conditions of men. The only 
fish these sportsmen catch, consist, I believe, of a few her- 
rings and black fish, with an occasional eel. The idea has 
often struck me that it is a great pity that they have not 

26 On the Murray River Cod. 

better game, and that the man would do them a great kind- 
ness, and not only thein, but the countless generations who 
will come after them, who would put a better prey within 
their reach than a herring of a few inches long, or a black 
fish, which rarely reaches a size constituting it properly pre- 
sentable at table. My thoughts naturally turned immediately 
upon the Murray River Cod, a fish which grows to an enor- 
mous size, is very delicate, palatable, and wholesome ; but 
which, from some unknown reason, is only found in those 
waters which flow towards the north or west; never in those 
flowing to the south or east. I could see no reason why this 
natural law should be irrevocable, and I have for a very long 
time desired to try the experiment whether this valuable fish 
would not live and thrive as well in the Yarra, as in any of 
the waters in which it has been so mysteriously placed. 

For a considerable time I was at a loss how to proceed. 
My first idea was to get them down by some rapid conveyance 
from the nearest point of the Loddon or Campaspe, in both 
which rivers they abound. But I did not feel justified in 
incurring a very heavy expense, and I also distrusted the 
length of the journey, and the probable exhaustion of the 
water in which it was necessary that they should be conveyed. 
By degrees I came to the conclusion that the best plan would 
be to trace up the tributaries of the Yarra and Murray 
respectively to the highest point at which those tributaries 
could be found united by a practicable road, and to leave to 
the fish themselves the duty of finding their way down to 
the larger stream. The King Parrot Creek, in which the 
fish is readily caught, and which discharges itself into the 
Goulburn just above Seymour, and the Plenty Biver which 
runs into the Yarra above Heidelberg, seemed to me the 
most suitable for the purpose, provided the road across the 
ranges were available for a light cart. On a recent visit to 
Yan Yean, I broached the subject to Mr. Sherwin, one of 
the oldest settlers in that neighbourhood, and got some very 
valuable information from him. And here I must gratefully 
acknowledge the services of that gentleman throughout the 
prosecution of my experiment. From the day I first men- 
tioned it, Mr. Sherwin has entered into it with the greatest 
enthusiasm, has warmly co-operated with me in every way, 
and, residing near the immediate scene of action, has been 
able to render me invaluable assistance, Mr. M'Lellan, too, 
a settler on the banks of the King Parrot has lent me very 
important aid. I found that there was a very passable road 

On the Murray River Cod. 27 

between the streams, of not more than seventeen or eighteen 
miles, and I immediately sent up an expedition to test the 
experiment fairly. That expedition was of a very modest 
character, — consisting of a couple of men, a horse and spring- 
cart, with tent, water-tight box, rations, and fishing tackle 
— almost ludicrously inexpensive as compared with the object 
at which I aimed, or as the result of combined action ; 
although quite sufficiently costly for an individual. I men- 
tion this as an illustration of the ease with which things are 
done if we each perform our share of the task, compared with 
the difficulty in the case of a single individual. 

After sundry little mishaps, in the way of horse-losing, 
&c, by which all such experiments are naturally beset, I 
heard from my man, that on the 6th February he had got 
safely across with nineteen live fish, and had put them into 
the Plenty, a mile or two above the township of Whittlesea. 
I immediately wrote off to Mr. Sherwin, asking several 
questions of some interest to the successful issue of the ex- 
periment, and by way of giving you a correct idea of its 
progress, I cannot do better than introduce an occasional 
extract of the letters received from that gentleman. I wrote 
up to ask particularly whether Mr. Sherwin had himself seen 
the fish put in the Plenty, whether he was certain they were 
the true Murray Pviver cod, and whether when put in they 
swam vigorously away as if life-like and healthy ; or lingered 
on the surface, as is the case with a weakly, diseased, or dis- 
abled fish. I must remark, here, that I asked these questions 
in no distrust of the man who has had charge of the experi- 
ment, for it is but justice to bear my testimony to the great 
zeal, intelligence, and fidelity he has exhibited throughout. 
But about experiments like these there should be no room 
left for any doubt whatever. If, as I believe and hope, 
these fish are to prove the progenitors of countless thousands, 
which in their own good time will make their way through- 
out the waters of the Yarra and all its tributaries, the cir- 
cumstances of their introduction to the streams on this side 
of the dividing range should be unquestionable. 

On the 16th February Mr. Sherwin writes me in reply to 
my questions — " 1st. Whether the fish are actually seen put 
" into the river ? Yes ; I was present and assisted to put 
" them into the river, and a large water-hole through which 
" the river constantly flows. 2ndly. Are they really the 
" Murray cod ? Fourteen were Murray cod, and five were 

28 On the Murray River Cod. 

" bream. 3rdly. When put into the water did they swim 
" vigorously away ? The majority of them did. Some ap- 
" peared sickly, and after watching them a short time, five cod- 
" fish and one bream died; indeed, four were all but dead when 
" they arrived. One bream died about four hours after they 
" were put into the river, and three days subsequently I found 
" one codfish dead in the hole and one bream in the river. 
" There have, therefore, been seven deaths out of nineteen 
" fish ; but I am certain no more have died, as I have con- 
" stantly watched both the river and the water-hole without 
" having discovered any more either sick or dead, and I think 
" that you have now living in the waters flowing to the 
" south, nine codfish and three bream." Mr. Sherwin goes 
on to say, " The latter fish is a fac simile of the fish of the 
" same name so common in the Bay, Saltwater River, and 
" Werribee. From the general appearance of the fish and 
" the number of deaths, I was of opinion that they had been 
" confined too long, and advised George to make shorter 
*' trips, even though he brought fewer of them, and to feed 
" the fish by throwing into his pen some maggotty meat, as 
" some of them appeared to me to be suffering from starva- 
" tion more than any other cause." 

After sundry further misadventures from floods and other 
causes, leading to the loss, at the King Parrot Creek, of a 
good many fish, Mr. Sherwin writes me again on the 25th 
February : — " In my last I expressed fears that the zinc box 
" had something in it deleterious to the lives of the fish, and 
" I advised certain changes ; first, that a cask with a scuttle 
" should be substituted for the cistern ; and second, shorter 
" trips by at least three days. I am happy to inform you 
" that these have been salutary changes, as the results show. 
" George arrived here with nine cod and three bream (after 
" an absence of four days), which, the instant they were put 
" into the river, darted off vigorously and disappeared. I 
" have constantly watched the place, both above and below, 
" and have not found any dead. On the 23rd he came down 
" again with another supply of twenty-eight fish — eighteen 
" of which were cod, and ten bream, all strong, vigorous, and 
" in beautiful condition, clean and bright, having the appear- 
" ance generally of only having just been captured; and 
" when put into the river they darted off instantly and dis- 
" appeared in the deep water. I have watched constantly 
" since, but have not found any yet either sick or dead. 

On the Murray River Cod. 29 

" These make a total now of forty-nine fish put into the 
" river since the 6th, all of which I believe to be living and 
" doing well." 

This you may easily conceive I looked upon as very good 
news — in fact the success of the experiment. I have little 
doubt that these would have been sufficient eventually to 
supply the waters flowing this way. But I was too pleased 
with the ease of the experiment to put a stop to it ; and 
besides this I think that in all these attempts, it is very false 
economy to limit the operation to what may be barely suffi- 
cient for the purpose. If we attempt to supplement Nature, 
we ouo-ht to imitate her in one of her most striking attributes 
— profusion. If the thing be worth doing at all, let us take 
care to do it well. 

On the 22 nd March, Mr. Sherwin writes — 
" The last batch of fish we put into the Plenty brought 
'* the total number up to one hundred and seven, consisting 
of sixty-six Cod and forty-one Bream, out of which number 
' I have an account of only ten deaths, namely, six Cod and 
four Bream. I have every reason to believe that we have at 
' the present moment in the Plenty Kiver sixty Codfish, and 
f thirty-seven Bream, all living and doing well ; and I think 
1 that after the batch that he will bring this evening for the 
c reservoir, he may, as far as the supply to the southern 
c waters is concerned, then close his labours ; more particu- 
' larly as the weather is beginning to break up. I said when 
' I last had the pleasure of seeing you, that I read some- 
e where that a Codfish spawned 3,000,000 and upwards, and 
i I find, on reference to a work I have, that a Codfish has 
' been known to produce 3,600,000 eggs, while a Herring, 
1 weighing only four or five ounces, spawns from 21,000 to 
e 36,000. If, therefore, only two of our ninety-seven Bream 
' and Cod now living should spawn all right, we shall soon 
' have all the waters flowing southward into the Bay teeming 
e with myriads of the finest, and, for all domestic purposes, 
' perhaps, the most useful fish in the world." 

I think that in the last remark my friend Mr. Sherwin 
probably allows his enthusiasm to run away with him a little. 
But it is only fair to mention that he is a native of Australia, 
that he has never been in England, and has, therefore, never 
had an opportunity of personally examining the claims to 
the very high character given to this fish, — of the herring, 
which affords sustenance and employment to thousands of 
people ; of the true cod of Newfoundland, that supplies a 

30 On the Murray River Cod. 

fishery — the rights of which have more than once nearly fur- 
nished a casus belli between the two most powerful countries 
in the world ; or of that monarch of all fresh- water fishes— 
the noble salmon of the northern hemisphere. 
^ About ten days ago I paid a visit to the scene of opera- 
tions, and I found that the wet weather then prevailing was 
indeed bringing the experiment to a conclusion, as far as this 
season was concerned. In high cloud-attracting ranges like 
those of the Plenty, flying showers are at this time of the year 
almost incessantly occurring, and these make the surface of 
the ground so slippery, that, combined with the steepness of 
the ascents, it is almost impossible for ahorse to keep his feet 
while drawing a heavy lead. My own old horse, although 
one of the worthiest and most staunch of his staunch and 
worthy race, had become so dismayed with the glassy surface 
of one particularly steep hill that he had twice refused it, 
and two loads of fine fish had consequently been returned to 
their native waters. I was not able even to fetch over one 
load to put into the Yan Yean Reservoir, the most splendid 
nursery for fish probably in the whole world ; consisting of 
several miles of water, varying to five and twenty feet deep, 
and at present almost unoccupied by any kind of fish. 

I desired my man, therefore, to concentrate his energies 
upon catching a few more, and endeavouring to bring them 
to town alive. In this he believes that he succeeded, but I 
fear that the quantity of water in which they were placed 
was too limited to support life in fish of such a size, and on 
the morning after arrival they were found to be all dead. 
I have kept one or two in brine, by way of giving an idea of 
the character of the fish. I have also a few salted specimens 
on the table. 

The Murray Eiver Cod is, in fact, a species of perch. It 
grows to an enormous size, takes a bait of worm, frog, or 
offal greedily, and is wholesome and palatable even when 
very large indeed. Mr. Sherwin tells me that he has him- 
self caught one of 73 lbs. weight, and that his men once 
assured him they had caught one of 93 Jibs. Mr. Sherwin 
saw the head, and felt convinced that they were speaking 
the truth. _ My friend Mr. Foxton tells me that he lived 
almost entirely upon them for several weeks, and that he has 
no doubt of their growing to that size. He recollects catch- 
ing one that gave himself and one of his men a very hard 
job to drag it home along the grass, with a stick thrust 
through its gills. In Adelaide they are reported to have 

On the Murray River Cod. 31 

been seen of 120 lbs. weight, and in size more resembling a 
porpoise than an ordinary river fish. Up to 20 or 30 lbs. 
weight they are very common. They are found along the 
whole course of the Murray and all its tributaries, even 
where dwindling into the most insignificant streams. And 
therefore I have no doubt of their forcing their way from 
the Plenty into the Yarra, and from it to all its minor 
branches. The Plenty at the place where they were put in 
is nearly as considerable a stream as the King Parrot Creek 
at the place where they were caught. It flows continuously 
through the whole summer into the Yarra, and although 
during the hot weather it is fordable at particular points, it 
abounds with deep holes, which constitute capital lurking- 
places for the fish during the drier months ; and frequent 
freshets afford ample opportunity for their change of locality. 
It will be perceived that although this paper professes to 
treat solely of the codfish I have made frequent mention of 
the bream, forty-one of which have accompanied the fish 
upon which we have principally concentrated our energies. 
Of this fish, Mr. Sherwin writes me, — " The bream is a fish 
" that I have never yet myself seen in the Murray, nor have 
" I ever seen it anywhere in fresh water till I saw them 
" caught in the King Parrot Creek, although common in the 
" bays and salt water rivers and creeks in different parts of 
fe the coast. The bream, however, may be an inhabitant of 
" the different rivers to the north without my knowledge, as 
" I have only been upon them occasionally and for short 
" periods." 

In the course of my experiment I have been met by two or 
three considerations ; upon the satisfactory solution of which 
a good deal of the practical success of the experiment appears 
to depend. In the first place, it struck me that, inasmuch 
as the enormous size to which this fish sometimes grows 
might be taken to indicate maturity, it was doubtful how far 
it would be likely to be in a condition to breed till that 
maturity was attained. In the second place I was anxious 
to know at what age the young ones, if produced, would be 
likely to have arrived at such a size as to be worth catching, 
or presentable at table. Thirdly, I was in doubt whether 
this was one of the periodically sea-seeking fishes, and if so, 
whether if it reach the Yarra it will be able to overcome 
such an obstacle as that presented at our falls, just above the 
Queen's Wharf. As to its readiness to breed, I received 
most satisfactory evidence from Mr. Sherwin who tells me 

32 On the Murray River Cod. 

that several of those about six pounds weight which either 
died, or were so much injured by the hook as not to be worth 
preserving, were completely full of roe. And upon applica- 
tion to Professor M'Coy, that gentleman kindly furnished 
me with some information of a very pleasing nature indeed, as 
leading me to look for complete fructification of my scheme 
at a far earlier period than I had ever been sanguine enough 
to anticipate it. Professor M'Coy says, " I have no specific 
" knowledge of the rate of growth of the Grystes Peelii, or 
" Murray cod-perch, but analogy would lead me to expect 
" that one year would grow a mature fish, able to breed, and 
" probably of the smaller size you mention in your species. 
" But the fact bearing perhaps most directly upon the diffi- 
" culty you allude to (of hearing of fish of 93 lbs., and 
" finding eggs in one of 6 lbs.) is unquestionable in all fishes, 
" namely — that, unlike warm blooded animals, there is no 
" limit to their growth. All fishes and reptiles continue to 
" grow larger as long as they live, and their maturity and 
" power of breeding is usually attained in the first year, at a 
" comparatively small size when compared with the dimen- 
" sions of old individuals." As to the prolific properties of 
the fish, Professor M'Coy's testimony is very cheering in- 
deed — " No one that I know," he says, " has counted the 
" eggs of the cod-perch, and the counting the European 
" perch (which belongs to the different genus Percd) would 
" not be applicable to your species. But here again a 
" general fact may serve your .purpose — that every fish has 
" ten or twenty thousand times more ova in the roe than are 
" required to keep up the average number of its kind. This 
" is to allow for the enormous destruction of young ones by 
" voracious fishes and other creatures which live on them. 
" The men employed by the French Government to stock 
" the large fish-breeding ponds for supplying the poor with 
" food in many parts of France, find a small part of the roe 
" of one fish sufficient to fill the largest inclosures." 

If the cod breeds in the Yarra or Plenty, it seems likely 
to be pretty safe from very destructive enemies. They eat 
one another I am sorry to say, with great greediness ; but 
escaping their fathers and mothers, and elder brothers and 
sisters, their numbers do not seem likely to be greatly de- 
creased by the few herons, kingfishers, &c, which I fancy 
are almost the ODly enemies with which they will have to 

If they are a sea-seeking fish, I hope that nature will have 

On the Murray River Cod. 33 

provided them with the same instinct for overcoming difficul- 
ties that she has furnished to the salmon and other river 
fishes which she compels periodically to seek the ocean. I 
am rather inclined to fancy that this is not the case, as Mr. 
Sherwin tells me that they are to be found far up the 
Murray at all seasons of the year, as, although they do not 
bite freely except during the warm weather, the aborigines 
seem able to catch one almost at any time. And as from the 
only possible outlet to the sea to some of the remoter tribu- 
taries of the Murray they would have to face a trip of pro- 
bably over two thousand miles, I think it far more probable 
that they are a purely fresh water fish, and never migrate at 
all. In the event of getting some alive to Melbourne, I had 
intended to try what proportion of sea-water one of them 
would bear, or whether it would live in pure sea-water. Their 
premature death, however, prevented my subjecting their 
disposition to seek the sea to any such test. At the same 
time it is worth remarking that the only great obstacle in 
their way would be the pier above the Wharf. This ob- 
struction is mainly artificial. It was placed there for the 
purpose of preserving the fresh water from the influx of the 
tide during the summer months, and as soon as the Yan Yean 
supply is completed it will become useless, and may probably 
at some day be altogether removed. 

I have thus, Mr. President and gentlemen, endeavoured 
to lay before you a sketch of my experiment. If successful 
I think it will be allowed to be an interesting thing to have 
introduced to the waters of the Yarra a fish which I have 
proved to you sometimes attains nearly twice the Aveight 
of one of our ordinary sheep. I trust that the result of the 
experiment will be to place, at no very remote period, a 
new and wholesome delicacy upon the tables of Melbourne 
and its neighbourhood, and to furnish the anglers of our 
river-banks with a prey which may possibly give them some 
trouble to draw from its waters. 

Personally I have no interest in the matter. I am no 
angler. I never caught a fish in the Yarra in my life, and 
most probably never shall catch one. If the cod ever should 
abound there, I may probably never taste it, for the time is 
coming in which I think it is unlikely that I shall remain a 
continuous resident in Australia. I have nearly completed 
my arrangements to give scope to a long-cherished desire to 
combine with the opportunity of seeing some of the more 
interesting countries in the world, the carrying out upon a 


34 On the Supply of Water 

larger scale the particular kind of experiment which I have 
here narrated as a very small one. I make the remark here, 
because I know the value in any such experiment of that 
kind of co-operation and encouragement to which I have had 
occasion gratefully to allude in mentioning the names of 
Messrs. Sherwin and M'Lelland, and I am not so absurdly 
proud or self-confident as to fail to bespeak it. I believe 
that a man can scarcely adopt a more useful or delightful 
pursuit to which to devote his time, his attention, and his 
means, than one which enables him, even in a small way, to 
add to or extend the productions of the earth, to endeavour 
humbly to supplement Nature in the supply of the multifari- 
ous blessings which she sheds around us, and to multiply 
legitimate enjoyments amongst the people. 

Art. VIII. — On the Supply of Water to the Town of 
Geelong. By John Millar, Esq., C.E., F.S.A., fyc. 
Engineer-in- Chief to the Geelong Water Commission. 

[Read before the Institute 6th May, 1857.] 

Having had the honour of being appointed Engineer to the 
Water Commission of Geelong, and seeing that the supply of 
life's great essential, pure and unadulterated water, to the 
inhabitants of any portion of this colony, is so intimately 
interwoven with the well-being of all, being a part and 
parcel of our vital interests, so essentially necessary to 
the enjoyment of perfect health that it must be a subject of 
universal importance, I therefore propose placing before the 
Institute a general summary of what has been done under 
my commission towards the accomplishment of that object, 
and the attendant results of my labours. 

I am perfectly sensible of the risk I incur in making state- 
ments on this subject, even when based on a sound theory, 
coupled with long practice, and strengthened by such statis- 
tical information as I may have been enabled to collect ; aided 
as I may be by all this, yet statements of a startling nature 
may appear incredible to those whose attention has never 
been directed to such matters ; if any such should doubt the 
accuracy of my conclusions, I can only say that they rest on 
facts which I conceive to be incontrovertible. 

to the Town of Geelong. 


I beg leave to rapidly review the past, and in the general 
order in which my duties as Engineer to the Commission 
have been undertaken. 

First, I shall briefly advert to three modes of supply which 
have heretofore been proposed by others, prior to my con- 
nexion with the Commission, as shewn by the accompanying : 

Table No. I. 

Proposed Sources of Supply for Geelong, shewing 
Altitudes, &c. 



Proof head of 


- '£ 


_3 '§ 

water pipes 





^r 5 


equal to a 
column of 





§ s 

water 800 




^ | 



ft. altitude. 

m S 


%, (3 ^ 


Mr. Henry ... 

Pumping & gra- 
vitation com- 





"1 o %'& a> 


Mr. Taylor . . . 






-a H S * 3 


Mr. Darbyshire 

Pumping & gra- 
vitation com- 





fe Hea 
00 ft. 
and to 
be exp 


Mr. Millar, En- 


to Water Com- 

Y Gravitation. 






p.* a 



C £ o 

cc ih o 

First, in 1852, Mr. Henry's — A pumping and very partial 
gravitation scheme combined : a crude and undigested plan, 
upon a very low scale. 

Second, in 1853, Mr. Taylor's — A pumping scheme. 

Third, Mr. Darbyshire's — A modification embracing both 
the foregoing plans, being a combined pumping and gravita- 
tion scheme, from the River Barwon, at Buckley's Falls, (at 
an altitude of fifty-four feet above high water mark in Corio 
Bay) from whence the water was to be raised by pumping to 
an additional altitude of one hundred and seventy feet, thus 
supplying (Geelong proper) a population of 30,000, at a 
limited consumption of but ten gallons per head per diem. 

On the engineering merits of this scheme it will not be 

36 On the Supply of Water 

necessary for me to make any observations, as a fatal objec- 
tion occurs at tbe very outset of its consideration, namely, 
in the quality of tbe water it is proposed to afford. — ( Vide 
Dr. Macadam's analyses and Report.) 

Subsequently, and very lately, another proposition has 
been mooted, namely, an extension of the Yan Yean to 
Geelong. It requires but the enumeration of a very few 
counter-reasons to set aside so futile a scheme. 

To those not quite conversant with the Yan Yean scheme, 
I may briefly say that it is the name of the reservoir which 
is intended to supply Melbourne with Avater. It is an exten- 
sive natural basin, comparatively shallow, covering about 
1300 acres, into which the waters of the River Plenty are 
directed, and is situated five hundred and ninety-five feet 
above the level of Hobson's Bay. 

The water, if brought in an unbroken line to the city, 
(assuming the pipes to stand the pressure, which they will 
not do unless by the intervention of self-acting " pressure 
reducing valves,) would command the highest houses. It is, 
however, imperative on that Commission to filter their 
water from its vegetable and other impurities ; and it is 
their intention to construct such filters adjacentto the line 
of mains at Darebin Creek, about midway, say three 
hundred feet, above datum ; therefore the pressure, in 
relation to the height of the highest houses in Melbourne or 
elsewhere, must be reckoned only from the altitude of the 
service reservoir supplied from the filter-beds. 

The length of pipe main conveying the water to Melbourne 
is about twenty miles ; and the idea is to continue a sub-main 
(branching to Williamstown) along the Geelong and Mel- 
bourne Company's Railway to Geelong, the distance being an 
additional fifty miles, to be fed by the re-erection of the old 
Collingwood cast-iron tank, at North Melbourne, from whence 
Williamstown and Geelong would be permitted to get a 
night supply, thereby re-introducing and perpetuating (on the 
supposition of there being water to spare) the exploded inter- 
mitting system. 

Besides, in alluding to it at all, which of necessity I am 
called on to do, as the only work of the kind as yet approaching 
completion in the colony, there are certain geographical and 
physical considerations which I should notice, were it not that 
by so doing, I would run this paper to a greater length than 
I had contemplated. Seeing, however, that attempts have 
been made to foist this water on the district to which I have 

to the Town of Geelong. 37 

the honour to be engineer, and having proved the great dif- 
ference of purity between our own and the water in the Yan 
Yean reservoir, I therefore object on principle to its intro- 
duction to Greelong. 

One, among other errors, which might have been obviated 
by the appliances of engineering forethought and skill, namely, 
the shallow embankment, causing the back water for aeon- ( 
siderable acreage within its perimeter to be so shallow in its 
depth as must inevitably cause increased loss from extra evapo- 
ration, absorption, and the moisture entering vegetable life ; 
consequently rendering the water apt to vegetate and become 
highly impure. 

What a splendid opportunity was here lost, and which pre- 
sents itself to a comprehensive mind, in the possibility > of 
having the finest artificial inland lake in the world, impounding 
water enough, and to spare ; the annual value of which, as a 
motive power alone, or for irrigation purposes, would have 
been equivalent to the interest of the entire expenditure, 
large as it has been. 

In addition to the first outlay in such a proposition for sup- 
plying Geelong, there would be an annual charge by the Mel- 
bourne Commission for the water itself ; and I may mention that 
their scale being, to large consumers, six shillings per thou- 
sand gallons, it follows that at this rate, on my estimated con- 
sumption of fifty gallons per head per diem, it would amount 
to an annual tax of £5 95. 6d. on man, woman, and child ; 
or on the population of 50,000 to £273,750 per annum— a 
sum, less than two years' expenditure of which, on our own 
account, would be more than sufficient to give us the same 
quantities per head on an increased population for many gene- 
rations to come. 

On the supposition even that the Melbourne Commission 
modified this rate for Greelong, it would still remain a fallacy. 

In reference to such a proposition, I would observe that the 
Yan Yean Water-works are as yet untried ; it is true that 
the floods of a more than ordinary wet winter have all but 
filled the reservoir, and disappointed the prognostications 
of some, who had fears on the subject. It is my own opinion, 
however, that with some modification, it will prove ample as 
regards quantity for the purposes for which it was originally 
designed, and a little more. I would therefore seriously ad- 
vise the proposers of so preposterous an extension not to step 
out of their own proper sphere, to remember the adage that 
" charity begins at home," in good truth not to be spendthrift- 


On the Supply of Water 

like, reckless of consequences, seeing that the numerous subur- 
ban towns and villages springing up around Melbourne, many 
of which will ultimately be amalgamated with the city itself, 
must, as matter of necessity, and that at no distate date, be 
supplied, whilst their out-lying neighbours, such as Geelong, 
might be famishing for that which Yan Yean had not the 
means of bestowing. That my views will coincide with the 
majority of observers I doubt not, when I enumerate a few 
of the places dependent on Melbourne for their supply, such 
as — 



Moonee Ponds, 







A goodly list of off-shoots ; and from 
the enumeration, who can say what would remain for Geelong, 
after all had been supplied ? particularly if a succession of 
dry seasons set in, which has happened before, and unques- 
tionably may occur again. 

Seeing that I quite disagree with the mere modicum of 
twenty-five gallons per head per diem allowed to Melbourne, 
I append a table showing the quantities allowed by the London 
and other Companies, in climates scarcely requiring one-half 
as much as ours : — 

Table No. II. 


North Melbourne, 
South Melbourne, 
East Melbourne, 

and a host of others. 

St. Kilcla, 

Emerald Hill, 


South Yarra, 


Upper Hawthorne, 

Lower Hawthorne, 




Grand Junction . 

• 72i 


. 34 

New River 

. 48 

West Middlesex . 

. 361 


. 33i 

East London 

. 24 


.. 100 


.. 40 


. 50 



Ancient Rome 

.. 310 

New York 

.. 300 


average ' of 



per head 

per diem. 

to the Town of Geelong. 39 

To the above table I have appended the supply to Ancient 
Rome, after which all our modern ideas sink into insignificance, 
proving the luxuriousness of that age, which is said on the 
authority of Sextus Julius Frontinus to have been 310 gal- 
lons per head per diem, and conveyed a distance of upwards of 
fifty miles in aqueducts, supported on seven thousand arches, 
of great magnitude, many of which are still in existence — 
examples of the ancient magnificence and finely cultivated 
taste of the Roman people. 

It is only by a patient investigation of the traces of ancient 
civilization as they survive in such public works, that we are 
enabled to form correct ideas of its real condition. The 
care taken by the Romans to ensure to all classes of society 
the full and comparatively free enjoyment of the first neces- 
saries of life, indicates that if theirs was an iron rule its des- 
potism was greatly counteracted by its intelligence, as witness 
the careful foresight in providing an abundant supply, evi- 
dently irrespective of outlay, for every use conducive to 
cleanliness, whereby every Roman citizen enjoyed the luxury 
of a bath, free of cost. 

In modern times, particularly in the mother country, this 
matter — water supply — is still a vexed question, and has either 
been tin-own into the hands of the local authorities or left to 
the enterprise of private companies, which has necessarily 
superinduced a mode of treating such works in a way but 
little conducive to the display of grandeur or magnificence ; 
the great end sought after (and generally obtained) being a 
good dividend at the expense of the people. The conse- 
quences of the rigorous application of which principle have been 
such that the mother country scarcely possesses one work 
connected with the supply of water, to be quoted, for its bold- 
ness of conception, grandeur of design, or as a parallel to the 
Roman example alluded to. 

Let us hope, and I believe, we have struck on a happy 
medium in Victoria — an amalgamation of the ancient system 
of management, (without its despotism) — with modern science 
in designing and conducting these great works, so conducive 
to the general prosperity of the colony. The management 
being placed in the hands of the representatives of the people, 
each commission being responsible to the Government as a 
head, all working together for the general good, having no 
personal interests to serve ; and, I believe, I am not too san- 
guine in stating that the ultimate result will be, having water 3 

40 On the Supply of Water 

the great necessity of life, as free for domestic uses as the 
air we breathe. 

With a practical eye, and feeling that I could not honestly 
recommend one or other of the foregoing schemes for adop- 
tion without a thorough searching investigation of the natural 
facilities of the country, although in Nos. 2 and 3, namely, 
" Mr. Darbyshire's propositions," there are many good points, 
I was therefore, thrown on my own resources, commencing 
the task with a right good will, a determination to succeed, 
feeling that each member of the commission with which I 
have the honor to be associated took an equal interest with 
myself in its success, fully appreciating my early endeavours 
to remedy two of the greatest social wants of our hemisphere, 
namely pure water and an effective drainage, the former 
now under consideration of the Board, the latter must natu- 
rally follow, or rather should be a work of simultaneous 

Before going further into the matter, I may state that I 
purpose dividing it under separate heads. 

First, the preliminary selection of a rainfall district, having 
an ample acreage of catch-water basin, and affording natural 
facilities for the formation of a reservoir on a gravitating sys- 
tem. Second, a feature survey of the district thus selected. 
Third, the all-important precursor, before adopting any scheme, 
viz., an investigation into and careful chemical analysis of the 
water recommended. Fourth, the preparation of an accurate 
contoured map and carefully-considered levels, from actual 
survey, of any locality so chosen. 

On the first, second, and third items, it will not be neces- 
sary for me to go into any enlarged details, more than touch- 
ing on the different heads as they occurred in the order of 

First, the selection of site. 

For the greater satisfaction of the members I may here 
state what has been my governing principle in the selection 
of a site for a reservoir. 

From my earliest connection with the commission, I have 
advocated the adoption of the gravitation principle, and in all 
my subsequent and consecutive reports I have invariably 
urged on their attention the advantages arising from, and the 
necessity of, providing the supply from a reservoir placed at 
such an altitude as would give a sufficient command above the 
level of Geelong proper, and its suburban districts, as would 

to the Town of Geelong. 41 

enable us to have a constant high-pressure supply to all, and 
on such a scale as would be ample for the rapidly increasing 
population, and of such a nature as in all future time could 
be supplemented without loss or deterioration to the then exist- 
ing works ; being, all things considered, tbe cheapest and 
best ; — the annual cost of the maintenance of such a system 
being a mere bagatelle as compared to the numerous advan- 
tages gained by its adoption. 

It being now an admitted axiom with all hydraulic engi- 
eers of any standing in the profession in the mother country, 
(not wedded to antiquated notions,) arising, no doubt, as a gene- 
ral result, from the inquiries instituted by the several European 
Governments into the subject — that water collected in reser- 
voirs from the rainfall over an extensive catch-water district, 
is not only purer than river water, but infinitely superior to 
well water, artesian or others, all of which are liable, more 
or less, to much mineral impregnation. To such an extent is 
this now impressed on the minds of the profession and scien- 
tific men in general, who may have turned their attention to, or 
made the subject a study, that the effect has been that nearly 
all the principal cities of Europe and America — (those in the 
Mother-country being London, Birmingham, Sheffield, 
Newcastle-on-Tyne, Halifax, Bristol, Manchester, Liverpool, 
Edinburgh, Dumfries, Glasgow, Greenock, Dublin, Bel- 
fast, Londonderry,) — either are or about to be so sup- 
plied, where possible, notwithstanding the princely sums 
which have been lavished on the old systems, and which are 
being abandoned and replaced by having recourse to the 
gatherings from the comparatively pure rainfall and natural 
surface drainage, where such is practicable, and if possible 
from the hilly country watershed, being, as a matter of course, 
purest near the original source, besides giving a command 
over the lower levels on which the inhabited districts are 
generally situated. 

Taking the foregoing as a truism, and who can doubt it, as 
regards the old country, how much more is it applicable to this 
country and to this particular locality, the subject of the pre- 
sent paper, where the rivers are either originally unfit for such 
uses, or are being rapidly rendered so. The Moorarbool, saline, 
brackish, nauseous. '.The Yarrawee, originally one of the purest, 
least saline, and most wholesome river-waters in the colony, 
has become totally unfit for domestic purposes, — quite turbid 
from the uses made of it by the mining population running 

42 On the Supply of Water 

as it does through one of the most populous and successful 
gold mining districts at Ballaarat, it has become so charged 
with finely comminuted particles of clay, held in suspension, 
of an unusually persistent character, from the gold-washing 
and puddling operations, and which I find do not subside even 
on its reaching the Barwon river, with which it intermixes 
on its course to the ocean border, and at a distance probably 
not much short of one hundred miles, taking into account its 
many tortuous and capricious meanderings through the bush, 
it is still foul with extraneous matter, next to impossible to 
arrest, even by the finest filtering media. 

Finding the Barwon above its confluence with the Yarrawee 
apparently pure to the eye, almost transparent, but palpably 
not so to the palate, being highly charged with saline matter, 
impregnated, no doubt, by having its course over, or inter- 
mixing with, the numerous saliferous springs which there 

Whilst on the subject of saliferous springs, I trust it will 
not be considered out of place, or an unpardonable digression 
on my part, to make a few remarks thereon, en passant, seeing 
that, as is well known to every settler, they abound in this 
colony, leaving the toil-worn traveller no alternative but to 
partake of them, however nauseous the draught, which but 
turns out to him a Tantalus cup, and instead of the expected 
pure water, he of necessity has to partake so far of epsom 
salts and damper for breakfast, or damper and epsom salts for 
dinner; so vice versa. » 

I doubt not but it may have come under the observation 
of many, that most of the large as well as smaller salt lagoons 
are cup-like in formation, which I believe to be caused by a 
gradual sinking of the outer crust of the earth, as the saliferous 
springs bring the brine to the surface, and which have found 
their way thither by " faults in the flag," caused possibly by 
slight shocks of earthquakes in time past. 

To make this theory more readily understood to those who 
may not have had any experience in mining, more par- 
ticularly Salt mining, I shall further explain what I mean by 
the " flag." It is a term generally used by the miners in 
Europe for a very hard earthy matter, of about two feet thick, 
at some sixty, or it may be a hundred, yards from the surface 
of the earth, under which the upper strata of rock salt is gene- 
rally found, varying in thickness from ten to fifteen yards. Brine 
is made by the passing of water (percolating from a higher 
level) over this bed, and, becoming saturated with the rock, 

to the Town of Geclong. 43 

escapes to the surface by simple pressure, rising through the 
faults or fissures which may have been formed as before ex- 
plained, or other exciting causes. This, when evaporated by 
our dry atmosphere, in these lagoons, accounts for the crust 
of salt found in and around them in such quantities. 

As the bed of the rock salt is dissolved by the motion of 
water over it, it becomes brine, and on making its way to the 
surface, leaving a vacuum, the outer crust will naturally sink, 
and follow the wasting away of the rock ; accordingly we 
find these lagoons formed, and I doubt not increasing in 
depth, but so imperceptibly as scarcely to excite a passing 
notice. It is a well-known fact that such has taken place in 
the mother country, at Northwich and other salt neighbour- 
hoods, where land formerly elevated is now submerged many 
feet under water. No doubt this sinking in the old country 
will, and does take place much more rapidly than with us, 
which is easily accounted for when I state that it is no unusual 
thing at many of these places to pump up an average of a 
thousand million gallons of salt brine per year. 

I should mention, that generally, under this first or upper 
bed of rock salt [(that is between the first and second beds), 
is to be found a stratum, of ten yards or so in thickness, con- 
taining no particle of salt, but quite impermeable to water ; 
it is therefore quite natural to expect that the brine from the 
upper layer will make its way to the surface, just as we 
find it. 

To return : — Being foiled by the impurities of the sources 
of supply which offered themselves in the neighbourhood of 
the town, I turned my attention to the source of the Barwon 
itself, to the elevated districts — the high and densely-timbered 
ranges, which, as an outlying belt, intercepts and condenses 
the rain-bearing clouds from abrupt contact with the satu- 
rated volume of air, highly charged with humidity from the 
Southern Ocean, carried landward by the prevailing winds, 
and, so far as I have been enabled to judge from the geo- 
logical structure of the country, its general configuration, its 
wild and precipitous glens, its systems of deeply-indented 
ravines, abrupt hills, deep creeks, elevated ranges, and exten- 
sive gullies, all tend to the belief — in the absence of any well- 
founded meteorological data, or even statistical information 
to go on — that the local and visible effects have been pro- 
duced by the copious outpourings, amounting to torrents of 
rain, which must have been supplied from the condensing va- 
pours precipitated on its surface ; a surface proving the hu- 

44 On the Supply of Water 

midity of the climate, clothed with all but perpetual verdure, 
even in the summer season, when the low lands or plains are 
literally scorched up, and not a blade of grass to be seen. 
These circumstances constitute it, as one of best rain-gathering 
districts probably in the colony, the aggregate volume of 
that falling within our water-shed, I doubt not, will ultimately 
keep the reservoir where I have decided on, after much and 
diligent search, in the valley of the Wormbete, well supplied, 
after making all due allowance for evaporation, leakage, 
absorption, decomposition, or other waste, in which opinion I 
am happy to say many of the earliest settlers — Hugh Mur- 
ray, Esq., Thomas Austin, Esq.,R. Bromhead, Esq., Edward 
Willis, Esq., and Dr. Thompson, &c. &c, who, after some 
twenty years personal observation, — quite coincide with me. 

On the occasion on which I laid before my commission, my 
report of this district, and a recommendation of the site for 
the reservoir, I had the honour of their approval, sufficient to 
warrant me in taking my 

Second Step — Namely, a feature survey of the valley and 
its numerous creeks, dying out, or rather taking their rise 
south, in the high timbered ranges, abutting against the east 
and west saddle, separating them from the Retreat Creek of 
the Wormbete forest, and comprising at least ten thousand 
imperial acres* of gathering ground within the water-shed 
marginal line, the surface of which I found to be like the gene- 
ral surface of the colony, hard and impermeable, so much so, 
that the body of the waters falling on its entire extent quickly 
drain off, (from its peculiar conformation,) suddenly swelling 
the numerous creeks and gullies to an enormous size, thus 
causing rapid but temporary floods after the rain, which, from 
the formation before alluded to, runs off in four or five days, 
gorging the Barwon, and causing it to overflow its banks, 
inundating the surrounding flats, swamps, and lagoons, north 
of the reservoir, again to find its way into mid-air by evapora- 

Traversing these creeks, and finding that the majority of 
them, and other minor gullies, were the natural channels of 
the available rainfall of this favourably circumstanced gather- 
ing ground, such as I have attempted to describe and repre- 
sent by my finished map (which I have the honour to exhibit 

* From a subsequent survey this quantity proves to be fifteen thousand 

to the Town of Geelong, 45 

this evening,) centred themselves by an arterial-like system 
in the valley of the Wormbete, near Hopkins's pre-emptive 
purchase, I at once determined on that as the best and most 
advisable site for the reservoir, provided a more careful 
inspection, and mature study warranted it. This having 
brought me to my — 

Third step — namely, a chemical examination of the water 
which I recommended, together with an analysis of fourteen 
other available waters, more by way of comparison, — to 
which I need not more than allude, your having a report on 
these waters by one of the first analytical chemists of the 
colony, John Macadam, Esq., M.D., who, after patient, 
long, and laborious manipulation, with myself, in the labora- 
tory of the Commission, has verified, in almost every par- 
ticular, my original assertions that the sources which I had 
recommended — namely, the Wormbete and Retreat Creeks, — 
yielded as pure, if not the purest water in the colony of Vic- 
toria, and quite equal to the majority of the purest known 
waters of the mother country. Vide his report, which I have 
the honour of laying on the table of the Institute. 

The completion and success of this analysis brought me 
to the 

Fourth step — the final selection of the site of the reser- 
voir. You will quite agree with me regarding the necessity 
that exists of bringing considerable practical knowledge, 
combined with due caution, to bear on the selection of such. 
The responsibility is not to be under-valued, seeing that the final 
success of any commission most materially hinges on the site 
being judiciously chosen, and with such skill as will ensure 

Subsequent and more mature consideration has but affirmed 
me in my first resolve, seeing that all that is required in this 
naturally formed valley of the "Wormbete, is the construction 
of such works as may enable me to arrest and impound the 
whole of the flood waters of the hilly country, on their on- 
ward passage to the sea, by the channel of the Barwon. 

Besides, having discovered the possibility of otherwise in- 
creasing the quantity very considerably by intercepting the 
Retreat Creek taking its rise south of the great dividing 
range of the Wormbete Forest, and running westerly — 
having its embouchure into the Barwon some miles distant, 
higher up the stream,) by drifting a short tunnel through the 
dividing range at a suitable level, into an already formed na- 
tural channel, I shall be enabled to convey this additional 

46 On the Supply of Water 

supply into the Wormbete reservoir by way of Western 
Creek (see map). By securing this additional quantity, I 
■would add upwards of ten thousand acres to the already 
large gathering ground, thus making assurance doubly sure, 
considering that in our variable climate, it is but prudent to 
put beyond hazard, or even doubt, the question of supply, 
by embracing all available sources within compass. 

Every attention has also been paid to the principal point 
in reservoir construction, i.e. the natural impermeability of the 
bottom, and which I have thoroughly ascertained by numerous 
trial pits, which I ordered the chain and staff bearers to sink 
to an average depth, whilst my assistants were otherwise em- 
ployed in camp duties, plotting their field-work. 

Care has also been taken in selecting the site for an embank- 
ment, within certain limits of deviation, — the foundation of 
which must either be solid or capable of being made so,) — 
having good natural abutments on either side of the valley, 
at the shortest possible span, the height sufficient to impound 
forty feet of clear water at centre of embankment, exclusive 
of a subsiding depth of ten feet additional, considering, as 
I do, that the great value of a reservoir, more particularly 
in these latitudes, depends principally on its greatest cubical 
contents with the least possible superficial evaporating 

To make this a certainty, and the more palpable to the ready 
understanding of the commission, and that such may not be 
altogether depending on the mere assertion of my verbal 
opinion, I have had an accurate surface survey, longitudinal, 
and numerous transverse sections, taken at every five chains, 
across the valley, showing its converging sides, and giving at 
same^ time the area of each cross section, and the means of 
plotting accurate contour lines on the map, describing the 
tortuous perimeter of the water levels at the three several 
depths of forty, thirty, and twenty feet at embankment, 
above the eduction pipe, thereby enabling me to come to as 
close an approximation as may be of the separate cubical 
quantities of water retained for use by each proposition. See 
Table No. III. 

to the Town of Geelong. 


Table No. III. 

Acreable Extent, and Capacity in Gallons, of Worrnbete 


Imperial Acres. 





The capacity of this reservoir will more readily be under- 
stood from the tables which I append to this report, and, 
viewed in conjunction with the drawings showing water-space 
within the forty feet contour level, to contain one thousand 
six hundred and sixty-one millions of gallons. 

Within the thirty feet contour level, to contain nearly one 
thousand millions of gallons. 

Within the twenty feet contour level, to contain five hun- 
dred and eighty-three millions of gallons. 

Table No. IV. 
Debit and Credit account for two and a half years con- 
sumption from Reservoir, at the stinted Melbourne allowance 
of twenty-five gallons per head per diem for a population of 
fifty thousand. 

Quantity in Reservoir at the 40 feet contour, 
Evaporation, &c, as explained (See Table 
No. VII.) . . . 

First year's consumption, at twenty-five gal- 
lons per head per diem, . 

Evaporation as before, on reduced surface, 
154 acres ...... 

Second year's consumption, as before, . 

Evaporation as before, on still further reduced 
surface, for six months, 

Half-year, or 6 months' consumption as before, 









48 On the Supply of Water 

The first, or forty feet contour level, is about half the 
annual rain-fall, and which would be equivalent to two and 
a half years' consumption of double the present population, 
at the Melbourne standard modicum of twenty-five gallons 
per diem. Even after taking into account the probable maxi- 
mum waste arising from absorption, decomposition, leakage, 
and evaporation, on the one hand, and of no rain-fall what- 
ever for the above period on the other. 

This, be it remembered, is without taking into account any 
portion of the evaporation returned to the reservoir during 
the two and a half years' assumed drought in the shape of 
dew precipitated on the surface of the quiescent waters of the 
reservoir, which of itself alone would yield nearly another 
month's supply, exclusive of the ten feet depth of subsiding 
space at a lower level, left untouched. 

In the absence of all meteorological observations to be 
depended on, in times past, for this locality, I must per force 
draw my conclusions from facts founded on those of the nearest 
adjoining districts where a known careful register of the 
quantities of rain falling has been kept for a series of years, 
as indicated by the pluviameter. I grant, however, it is 
difficult to calculate the rain-fall in any given district, even 
to an approximation by data resting on observations taken 
elsewhere ; yet, at the same time, in the absence of such 
valuable and necessary local information, I must say that, in 
proper hands, the former will approximate nearer the truth 
than by quoting authorities from another hemisphere, it 
being exceedingly doubtful, in the present state of meteoro- 
logical science in the colony, how far it would be safe to rely 
on such analogy, besides affording no guide in estimating the 
proportion of rain-fall in so favorably circumstanced a locality 
as that of Wormbete Forest. Besides, I prefer dealing with 
facts, when to be had ; and, whilst on this subject, I will here 
record one, not generally known either in the colony or 
the mother country — a fact regarding the great amount of 
difference existing between the rain-fall of Melbourne and 
that of London, and several other cities of Europe. (See 
Table No. V.) 

The synopses of several of the places enumerated are com- 
piled from authentic documents kindly forwarded to me by 
order of His Excellency Sir William Thomas Dennison, 
Governor-General of the Australian Colonies ; also from W. 
H. Freeling, Esq., Capt. R.E. ; Surveyor-General of South 
Australia ; and the Corporate body of Launceston, Tasma- 
nia ; A. J. Skene, Esq., District Surveyor of Geelong ; to 

to the Town of Geelong. 


all of whom I hereby register my thanks for the readiness 
evinced in forwarding to me the necessary Meteorological 

Table No. V. 

Climates of Melbourne and London. 
Comparative Eain-fall in Corresponding Months. 









Mean at 


20 Years, 




January , 
February. . 


April .... 


June .... 


August . . 
October . . 
































Totals in \ 

12months [ 

of each [ 

year j 








C Totals in 
J 12 M'nths 
1 of each 
I year 

Mean of 5 

Excess of Melbourne over London, 
8.59 inches. 

Mean of 5 

Melbourne, 5 yrs., 1847 to 1851 32-63 

Sydney do. do. 45*79 

Adelaide do. do. 24-23 

Launceston do. do. 33-50 

Bonninvong, 1850 to 1853 29-64 

Melbourne 1856 28-60 

Yan Yean 1856 25-03 

Geelong, ' 1856 24-72 

London, 20 years, 1846 24-04 

Edinburgh, 21 years , 25-60 

Glasgow, 2 years 33-60 

Dublin, 6 years 30-87 

Belfast ...' 36-00 

Great Britain (mean of) .... 32-00 

Paris 21-00 

Rome 36-00 

It will be seen in the foregoing Table No. V., that, by 
placing the rain-fall of London (the Metropolis of the 
Northern Hemisphere), and that of Melbourne (the Metro- 
polis of the Southern Hemisphere,) in a tabular form, in juxta- 
position, an interesting fact is proved to demonstration, viz., 
that Melbourne exceeds London by upwards of 35 per cent. 
The table is compiled from the records of the Melbourne 
Observatory (then kept by William Henry Archer, Esq., 


50 On the Supply of Water 

Assistant Registrar for Victoria), which satisfactorily show 
that, from a mean of five consecutive years, commencing with 
1847 and ending 1851, both inclusive, the Melbourne rain-fall 
was as high as 32-63 inches, whilst London was but 24-04 
inches, taken from a mean of twenty years antei'ior to 1846, 
showing a difference of 8*59 inches, or, in other words, an 
extra one hundred and twenty-five millions of gallons of rain 
per square mile, leaving a large balance in favor of colonial 
account, and which but requires the appliances of skill to col- 
lect and turn to many profitable uses. 

It is a matter of the utmost regret that no earlier com- 
plete series of rain- fall data for Victoria (than those I have 
enumerated) are extant ; though several parties, as amateurs, 
formerly kept registries, yet, from change of residence or 
other causes daily occurring in a new country, many of them 
have been so irregularly kept (most dropped into disuse) as 
to afford but little reliable information. 

It will be seen, however, that from such as we have, the 
authorised registers of the Australian colonies, — that of 
Victoria, kept at Melbourne, — New South Wales, at Sydney, 
— South Australia, at Adelaide, — and Tasmania, at Laun- 
ceston, — 'all of which I have repeated as an addenda to Table 
No. V. — give a mean of 34 - 4 inches per annum, being, as I 
know, about two and a-half inches in excess of the mean of 
Great Britain, on the authority of Professor Thomson, a 
name well known in meteorological science. These regis- 
tries which I have collated are astounding facts, and from 
such authorities will rather astonish Europeans who have 
never been out of the bounds of that hemisphere, and whose 
preconceived notions lead them to consider we have but little 
moisture here. I doubt not that this will even startle many of 
our old colonists, now resident in the mother-country, whose 
rain experiences whilst in the colony, without scientific regis- 
ters, led them to imagine we had very much less rain here 
than in England, whereas quite the reverse is the fact. 

It is not out of place here to reply to a query which may 
have, or at all events will, occur to your minds. Has the 
author of this paper kept any register at Wormbete? I 
answer in the affirmative. Considering it to be a prudent 
step in the eyes of my Commission to strengthen the opinions 
already enunciated by me in regard of this locality, I at 
once had a rain-gauge manufactured on the best principle, 
placed under the care of a gentleman of known honor and 
integrity, John R. Hopkins, Esq., and who, equally with 

to the Town of Geelong. 


myself, felt an interest in daily recording its readings, and 
which his constant residence there, and regular habits, 
enabled him to do. 

Considering that the members of the Institute would feel 
but little interest in the returns of but a few months, since 
the guage was fixed at Wormbete, I have not included it in 
the above table ; but it may be satisfactory to know that up 
to the latest date it records a rain-fall exceeding Geelong by 
forty-Jive per cent., quite equalling Melbourne ; and exceeds 
Yan Yean by thirty per cent.* 

Taking the records of Melbourne, as before stated, on Mr. 
Archer's authority, as showing a rain- fall of 32*63, and that 
of the Yan Yean (twenty miles noi'th of Melbourne) on the 
authority of Charles James Griffith. Esq., M.L.A., the 
President of the Sewerage and Water Commission, who 
states it as being as high as 36 inches per annum, and 
which I believe, from my own experience, to be very con- 
siderably under the mark. 

These, with simultaneous observations upon the quantity 
discharged by the outlets of this (Yan Yean) now ascertained 
area of surface drainage, and a comparison of the quantity of 
rainfall, will afford something like data of the greatest import- 
ance. This, together with a careful study of the configuration 
of the surface of that district, with its attendant or exciting 
causes, enable me to approximate pretty near the truth of 
what proportion of rain can be considered available ; no 
doubt, however, this must be modified by the local circum- 

* Subsequently I have been enabled to fill up a Six Months' comparative 
Table, as annexed, of the before mentioned localities, quite verifying my 
anticipations : — 

Comparative Bain-fall at Wormbete, Geelong, Melbourne, and Yan Yean. 



J. E, Hop- 
kins, Esq., 


A. J. Skene, 




E. B. Smyth, 


Yan Yean. 

Chas. Taylor, 




January .... 
February . . . 
















E 2 

52 On the Supply of Water 

stances of the Wormbete district, meteorological, hydrogra- 
phical, and physical ; evaporation, rain-fall, general configura- 
tion, soil, &c. &c, not only within the bounds of the catch- 
water district, but the surrounding country generally, as well 
as other varied circumstances, such as the prevailing winds, 
and other counter-agents bearing on the results. All must 
be taken into account and properly considered, with such ac- 
curate information as I may have been enabled to collect and 
record, so as ultimately to give me a perfect basis from which 
to deduce a calculation that can be depended upon in its 
resultant facts, not forgetting to take into account that the 
water shed commences at a high level, (something bke twelve 
to fifteen hundred feet above the sea board,) falling with steep 
but regular gradients towards the valley, ensuring a rapid 
conduction of the water falling on its surface to the reser- 
voir, thereby diminishing the likelihood of extensive evapo- 
ration and mineral impregnation. 

Touching the vexed question of evaporation in these colo- 
nies, I may here state that the hitherto theoretical opinions 
formerly held by several parties in Victoria, have been con- 
siderably toned down by practical experience. It should not, 
however, be forgotten, that evaporation is more or less modi- 
fied by several attendant causes acting on the atmosphere, such 
as temperature, moisture, force and direction of the wind, all 
tending to that uncertain condition, which, ever varying the 
evaporation, precludes the possibility of having any fixed 
rule, excepting an average founded on actual observation in 
the locality, and extending over a considerable space of 

My opinion, founded on actual colonial observation, on 
large bodies of deep and almost quiescent water, such as 
reservoirs in a still state, enables me confidently to pronounce 
it as considerably under fifty-two inches per annum, and very 
probably the opinion held by Major (now Colonel) Cotton, from 
more extended observations in the colony as regards time, 
are still more in conformity with the fact. His opinion was 
forty-five inches.* 

* Touching evaporation I have considerable pleasure in adding that, from 
subsequent information from the resident engineer at Yan Yean, he states 
that from careful observation during the time that the aqueduct, feeding the 
reservoir was closed for the completion of the tunnel, the water being then 
five and a-half feet deep in reservoir, the evaporation from the same -was 
one-tenth of an inch per day during the summer months of January, Febru- 
ary, and March, 1856. And again, in October of the same year, during which 
month the supply had been taken from the river, the evaporation was much 
the same, being an average for the entire year of but 36 inches. 

to the Town of Geelong. 53 

As a general principle,, I have advised that the consumption 
for Geelong be apportioned as follows, (looking on the stan- 
dard modicum — " twenty-five gallons" — allowed in Melbourne, 
as no criterion for colonial guidance,) having the likelihood of 
a most abundant and unlimited supply. In my calculation I 
allow sixty gallons per head, per diem for the summer con- 
sumption, to supply the ordinary domestic wants, &c. &c, as 
hereafter enumerated, for a population numbering fifty thou- 
sand souls. 

For the winter half-year, when consumption necessarily 
(for public purposes) is very much diminished, I allow forty 
gallons, being a mean of fifty gallons per head per diem, as 
the basis on which I found my calculations for the en- 
tire yearly consumption, and distributed under the following 
heads : — 

1st. Domestic Uses. 
2nd. Hospitals, Dispensaries, &c. 
3rd. Asylums. 
4th. Schools. 

5th. Gaols, Court-Houses, &c. 
6th. Public Wash-Houses and Baths. 
7 th. Shipping. 

8th. Horse and Cattle Troughs. 
9th. Extinction of Fires. 
10th. Cleansing and Watering Streets. 
11th. Flushing Sewers, Drains, &c. 
12th. Ornamental Fountains. 
13th. Public or Botanical Gardens. 
14th. Gardening Purposes. 
15th. Railways. 
- 16th. Steam Engines. 
17th. Manufactories. 
18th. Abattoirs, 
And Public Buildings in general, &c. &c. 

In calculating the supply, I take the water-shed, being a 
surface catch-water basin, assumed to be, at a most moderate 
estimate, ten thousand acres in extent, within the marginal 
apex, the drainage of which flows into the Barwon, by way 
of Wormbete Valley, where I purpose impounding it by the 
formation of an embankment fifty-eight feet in height. 

54 On the Supply of Water 

Table No. VI. 


Assumed Eainfall . 


See data, Table No. VIII. taken at 36-00 

Dew 0-00 

Evaporation . . . . . . . . . . . . 27*00 

25 per cent, available rain-fall . . . . . . . . 9-00 

6,666 imperial acres, or two-thirds of watershed, 
allowing 9 inches or 25 per cent, as available 
rainfall . . 

3,334 imperial acres, or two-thirds of watershed in 
the immediate vicinity of the Eeservoir, or 
50 per cent, as available rain fall 




252 imperial acres surface level of reservoir, at 40 ft. 
contour — 

Eainfall .. .. 36-00 inches.! oo-tokqiqo 

Dew .. .. 4-00 = 40-00 J m'^^* 

Available gallons of water per annum . . . . 2,941,881,880 

Table No. VII. 

Cubical Capacity of Eeservoir, in Gallons. 

Cubic Feet. Gallons. 

Wormbete Valley proper . . 207,976,236 

Western Inlet 53,541,047 

North-east Inlet .. .. 5,147,058 

266,664,342, or 1,661,318,850 
Acreage at forty feet level of ] Mean 218 acres 

surface 252 \ at 

Ditto thirty feet .. •• 184 J 4-166 feet 246,462,969 


Consumption of 50,000 population, at an average 
of fifty gallons per "head per diem, for all 
purposes, for twelve months . . . . 912,500,000 

Showing a balance of above five' hundred mil- 
lions of gallons, as provision against 
occasional droughts 502,355,881 

Consumption for an additional sis months . . 456,250,000 

Balance of forty-six million gallons for evapo- 
ration and contingencies, after supply for 
eighteen months . . . . . . . . 46,105,880 

to the Town of Geelong. 55 

The working out of the last table (No. VII.) shows a 
balance of water still on hand from the once filling of the 
reservoir, and after supplying a 50,000 population for 
eighteen months, and without receiving during that period 
any additions to its quantity. 

It will be observed that the quantity would snffice for the 
present population of 25,000 for two and a half years ; or, 
by reducing the allowance per head to the Melbourne 
standard of twenty-five gallons, for five years. 

This, let it be understood, is without infringing on but half 
the rain-fall, the whole of which being (2,941,881,880) two 
thousand nine hundred and forty-two millions of gallons — 
see Table No. VI. Were it impounded, it will readily be 
understood that there would be a sufficiency (after deducting 
for yearly evaporation) for nearly double the above periods ; 
say three, five, and eight years respectively, quite sufficient 
to lull all anxieties respecting the probability of a water 
famine, even if three or four consecutive years of drought 
should ever unhappily again occur, as it has in the memory 
of many of the early settlers. It leaves a very ample mar- 
gin to meet contingencies of any nature or kind, and more 
particularly all cavil. 

It may be, that superficial observers, or persons who have 
not made hydraulic questions their study, may at first sight 
imagine that I have either set down the available rain-fall at 
a high figure, or from imaginary data. 

In contravention of such idea, I append Table No. VIII. 
of actual rain-fall at Yan Yean reservoir, and quantities 
ascertained both by careful gaugings at mouth of inlet 
tunnel, and checked by water-gauge staff, permanently fixed 
at the outlet tower of the reservoir. I wish to show the 
several facts deducible therefrom. 


On the Supply of Water 

Table No. VIII. 

9 "° 

Quantities calculated at a per centage on 
Eain-fall of Water Shed. 

9 a 
■A J 

3 « 





Gallons. Gallons. 
40,000 acres drained by Plenty 

River, 33 per cent. . . 507,478,356 
5,500 acres, drained by Reser- 
voir 65 per cent. . . 137,442,054 
1,300 acres, surface of Reser- 
voir, 100 per cent. . . 49,978,929 

g §£ 



40,000 acres, as above, 35 per 

cent 712,369,630 

5,500 acres, as above, 70 per 

cent 195,901,571 

1,300 acres, as above, 100 per 

cent 66,148,582 



Table No. IX. 

Synopsis, showing Register of Pluviameter in Victoria for same months. 

Yan Yean. 600 

feet above 
sea level. 

Melbourne. 130 feet above 
mean sea level. 

Geelong. 125 

feet above 
mean sea level. 

June and July, 

Time. Mean 
of Five Years, 
June and July 
ending 1851. 

June and 
July, 1856. 

June and 
July, 1856. 





The above tables, Nos. VIII. and IX., are compiled from 
accurate and authentic data, (kindly supplied me by Mr. 
Charles Taylor, resident engineer at Yan Yean reservoir, to 
whom I tender my thanks,) and checked from means within 
my own control. The quantities of water, 35, 70, and 100 
per cent, respectively, may seem to be excessive for the 
registered rain-fall, but I know that nearly as much water 
escaped by the bye- wash, i.e, the River Plenty ; that 
is, off the 40,000 acres, (the 5500 acres being the original 
and only water-shed of the reservoir swamp, to which it 
finds its way irrespective of the artificial aqueduct.) This 

to the Town of Geelony. 57 

reservoir having no bye-wash proper, therefore, strictly- 
speaking, the word "bye-wash" is a misnomer, as at 
present applied by the authorities in connection with the 
scheme ; it is simply an outlet overflow, constructed at the 
termination of the embankment. The real bye-wash is the 
original River Plenty, by which all that the aqueduct cannot 
receive pursues its onward course to the sea. 

These tables prove one of two things — either that the plu- 
viameter indicated less than the real Tall, or that nearly all, 
if not quite all, the rain-fall on the 40,000 acres, found its 
way towards the reservoir, and would have nearly filled it, if 
the two-mile aqueduct had been capacious enough to convey 

That the whole quantity came down I do not for a moment 
doubt ; and it arose from the fact of the ground having been 
thoroughly well saturated prior to the rain now registered for 
June and July, 1856, thereby proving that heretofore the 
theoretical allowance of colonial engineers and others for 
available water is much under the mark. 

I would have it, therefore, inferred, that the per centage 
as allowed by me for Wormbete is no way in excess, but 
otherwise scanty, seeing that it is a much more favorably 
circumstanced gathering-ground, all things considered, than 
the Plenty. 

Table No. X. 

Showing the proportion of Evaporating Surface of various Home and Colonial 
Keservoirs and natural Lakes, as compared to their acreable Water-shed 
in extent : — 

Lake Corangamite 

Lake Colac 

Lake Wardyallock 

Eivington Pike (England) 

Yan Yean 








In regard to the purity of the Wormbete reservoir waters, 
it should be borne in mind that from the time on which they 
are condensed on the surface until they are impounded in the 
reservoir there are no lagoons to fill, no sedgy marsh lands, 
no extensive swamps to pass over, absorbing much, dis- 
colouring the residue, and creating vegetable poison; no 
fallow lands or agricultural district to impregnate more or 
less by the impurities which they contain, and which may be 
gathered up by the waters passing over them ; no contami- 

58 On the Supply of Water 

nating influences arising from sheep or wool-washing establish- 
ments ; and, being far removed from population, there are 
few floating impurities in the air, and no sewage matter to 
deteriorate the surrounding soil ; scarcely a human being, all 
being still, save the occasional ringing note of the solitary 
woodman's axe : and it should not be forgotten that animal 
matter taken hold of in any shape by the solvent power of 
pure water, though in minute particles, is held by the first 
authorities to be prejudicial in regard to health. 

It should further be borne in mind (and it is no slight 
recommendation,) that from the very natural configuration of 
the thousands of acres in this forest, it never can, in all time, 
become an agricultural district — must remain as it is, save 
being denuded of its timber, thereby giving an assurance that 
coming generations will, equally with the present, enjoy a 
pure water-gathering ground and pure water, without the 
intervention of artificial filters, many of which, in some of 
the finest works in the mother country, are exceedingly 
troublesome, and liable to get out of order. 

The Retreat yields water of the greatest natural purity, 
the pellucid stream of which is comparatively free from even 
vegetable contamination, (notwithstanding the adjacency in 
such numbers of the tall but graceful and luxuriant tree-fern, 
and other plants of an almost tropical growth ;) little or no per- 
ceptible change has been imparted to the water thereby ; it is 
deliciously cool, strongly reminding me of the bright sparkling 
waters of the mother country ; it is almost as pure as the 
purest known, and very much better adapted for domestic 
uses than most, being less impregnated either with mineral 
or chemical constituents — (vide Dr. Macadam's Report) — 
not requiring filtration, pure, brilliant, and entirely unexcep- 
tionable in colour or taste, betraying no organic taint, and 
evincing prima facie great purity. 

Having shown that more than a sufficiency of water is 
procurable, it now rests with my Commission to order the 
necessary steps next in progression to be taken, by which so 
abundant a supply can be made available for the town, by 
the construction of such works as may be required for 
collecting, conveying, and distributing that which nature has 
put within our grasp, namely, the fundamental groundwork 
for creating a never-ceasing gravitation supply. 

Having given much and serious study to the ichnographi- 
cal features of the town and its suburban districts, with a 
view to high and constant service, it but remains for me to 

to the Town of Geelong. 59 

say, that, seeing it is a matter of the greatest importance, and 
should be kept most prominently in view, the supply being 
not only ample, but good and unlimited, with an ever-con- 
tinued pressure constantly on, available at all times day or 
night from an altitude sufficient to command the upper story 
of the highest house in the most elevated district, sufficient 
to quickly and efficaciously extinguish fires, however exten- 
sive, and that without incurring any additional outlay for 
power, save the fire-plugs or hydrants, protecting the town 
against the devastating element of fire, a striking proof of 
the lamentable effects of which we so lately have had in the 
ravages committed in the Market Square, Geelong, on the 
night of 26 th December last, destroying in so short a space 
of time £50,000 worth of property, which, had these pro- 
jected works been but complete and in a working state, they 
would most assuredly have kept the total loss under £500, 
a difference of £45,500, — a large amount consumed by this 
one fire alone, which would have formed a considerable item 
in the expenditure necessary for the formation of water 

Thus, — I take it, the future protection of the citizens and 
their properties will be secured from such a scourge by sim- 
ple pressure, obtained from such an altitude as will render 
obsolete the primitive mode now obliged to be resorted to, 
as a matter of necessity, by an otherwise well-regulated, 
energetic, and fearless fire brigade, bringing to their aid a 
comparatively weak and inefficient mechanical power. 

Suffice it to say that by this gravitation we avoid the 
necessity for the erection of steam-engines, or other expen- 
sive machinery, in duplicate or otherwise, ever liable to get 
out of order. We also avoid elevation syphons, with all 
their paraphernalia, which is rendered unnecessary, besides 
other expensive appendages too numerous to detail within 
the limited compass of this paper, nor is it desirable that I 
should do so, seeing that any or every pumping scheme is 
superseded by the adaptation of nature's own providing — a 
gravitation SCHEME, eligible, safe, simple, and comprehensive. 

It may be that I shall have the honour on a future occasion 
to submit, (subject to your wishes,) a further or supplemental 
paper, on an extended scheme, the possible formation of a 
reservoir, in the same locality, covering an area of four hun- 
dred acres, depth of water seventy feet at embankments, and 
the cubical contents of six hundred and forty-five million 
feet, or four thousand and eighteen million gallons in quantity ; 

60 On the Supply of Water to the Town of Geelong. 

the which is worthy of our consideration in a climate such 
as this, where the rain-fall has been known to be casual, ex- 
ceedingly precai'ious, uncertain, and occasionally scanty in 
amount ; sufficient to meet the views of the most Utopian 
opinions on increasing population in any country, and more 
particularly that of our adopted one. 

In the experience of the older colonists we have had two 
and even three (some say four), consecutive years of drought ; 
if such should unhappily again occur, it may be that the 
population of Melbourne might be dependent on Geelong for 
water. Such being the case, by the erection of an embank- 
ment of the magnitude contemplated in my supplemental 
paper, we would have enough and to spare, so that Melbourne 
could be assisted without infringing on the rights of Geelong. 

Foreseeing the possibility of deriving a revenue more than 
enough to warrant an extra expenditure of considerable capi- 
tal by a well-digested system of reproductive works, using 
the surplus waters capable of being impounded — 

1st. For use of Man. 
2nd. Use of Animals. 
3rd. Sheep "Washing. 
4th. Irrigation. 
5th. Irrigation as Manure. 
6th. Motive Power, by the use of hydro- 
pneumatic engines, or others. 

I believe I am warranted in stating that the value of water 
for irrigation purposes is by no means as yet sufficiently known 
in the colony, but it is to be hoped that the day is not far dis- 
tant that its merits will be appreciated as it deserves. And in 
connection with this, I will but draw your attention to a few 
facts connected with such a use in a climate not unlike ours, 
namely, the innumerable tanks and reservoirs of our con- 
quered provinces of India, which had been constructed under 
the native princes for the use of their people. Scarce a vil- 
lage is without one, and where the population was dense, 
requiring greater, such as the present Madras Presidency, 
they had a reservoir thirty miles in circumference, having an 
embankment of some twelve miles long, and approaching a 
depth of fifty feet. 

In reference to this subject I doubt not but when the time 
arrives for our Government to take the matter up in detail, 

B ! [ ': 

i.=a y 

On an Instrument for ascertaining the Dew Point. 61 

it can be satisfactorily proved that such works can be made 
reproductive, and handed down to posterity as the triumph of 
the infant age of Victoria, and worthy of the times in which 
we live. 

Art. IX. — On the Construction of an Instrument for ascer- 
taining the Dew Point. By B. BROUGH Smyth, Esq., 
C.E., F.G.S., Sfc. 

[Read before the Institute, 6th May, 1857.] 

Great difficulty is experienced by Meteorologists in deter- 
mining the dew point by direct experiment. 

In very hot countries, or in those places where the air is 
very dry, Daniell's beautiful invention is almost valueless. I 
need not state the objections to the black and white bulbs of 
Daniell: they are known to all who have ever used a 
hygrometer systematically, and compared the results with 
the dry and wet thermometers. 

Mr. Glaisher has emphatically protested against the use of 
Daniell's instrument in hot countries, and indeed has very 
properly pointed out the liability to error when it is used, 
under any circumstances, by inexperienced persons. Even 
with the utmost care the best result is seldom within 0-25°. 

An ordinary method of obtaining the temperature of the 
dew point is by a silver cup, and a freezing mixture. The 
cup is partly filled with water, and is cooled down by stirring 
in the refrigerating compound until a deposit of clew takes 
place on the outer surface of the cup, and at the moment 
when the dew is observed the temperature of the liquid is 
taken by a thermometer. 

Now all I have to offer as a contribution to the instru- 
mental aids of the Meteorologist is, an improvement on this 
last method. 

The drawing shows at a glance the plan I would pi'opose. 
The bulb of the standard Kew thermometer A is placed close 
to the inner edge of the thin gold cup B. Within the gold 
cup there is a copper vessel, C, connected by a (Y) pipe 
with the exterior cups C, E, and F. These are filled with 
water, and the temperature of E is supposed to be reduced 
to 33 ° , or lower when it may be required, by a freezing 
mixture. By turning the stopcocks, x x, the observer can 
cause the gold cup to be filled with water at any required 

62 New Australian Plants. 

temperature with great facility, and without withdrawing his 
attention from his instrument. It is presumed that the water 
and the outer edge of the gold cup will be of the same 
temperature ; for after the liquids at different temperatures 
have passed through, and over the copper vessel, C, they 
will be well mixed before acting on the bulb of the ther- 
mometer, or the edge of the cup. 

By the stopcock y the water, if it be too cold or too hot, 
can be easily run off into a waste cup. 

By this arrangement, though I have not yet proved it by 
actual observation, it is believed that the dew point can 
be obtained with minute accuracy, say within 010°. 

The instrument is easily portable. All the parts can be 
unscrewed and packed away ; and it does not render neces- 
sary the use of a liquid like ether, which is very difficult to 
carry, and which wastes and deteriorates rapidly during the 
summer in this country. 

Akt. X. — Account of some New Australian Plants. By 
Dr. Ferdinand Muellee. 

[Bead before the Institute, 5th August, 1857.] 

Mr. President and Gentlemen — It is not without 
hesitation that I submit to the Institute a limited number of 
plants, which have, perhaps, no other claims on your attention 
but their novelty ; and I should have retained them for pub- 
lication in a Phytological Journal, but for a desire of recog- 
nizing publicly in Australia the recent contributions of some 
scientific friends towards our knowledge of the indigenous 
vegetation. It offers, however, likewise, the opportunity to 
show how much the wonderful works of Nature remain to 
be revealed in our own country. 

Some of the plants which I have the honor to exhibit are 
selected from a Herbarium formed by Mr. Hill, the Super- 
intendent of the Brisbane Botanic Gardens, a gentleman of 
keen observation, and great ardour for botanical research. 
Others were communicated by Mr. Charles Stuart, who suc- 
ceeded last season in forcing his way into the wilderness of 
Mount Laperouse, in South-western Tasmania, and through 
whose exertions new features of its alpine flora have been 
unveiled. Others of these plants were discovered during a 
journey through the Grampians, performed by my zealous 

New Australian Plants. 63 

assistant, Mr. Wilhelmi, under the auspices of our Govern- 
ment. For some of these novelties I remain indebted to 
other gentlemen ; and I can only regret that I was not enabled 
to bring on this occasion their merits more prominently before 
the Institute in a fuller display of their kind communications. 

Only a few of the species are obtained by myself, princi- 
pally salt bushes, — insignificant in their appearance, but 
invaluable in the desert for the subsistence of sheep-flocks. 
These were procured already, in 1851, near Lake Torrens, 
a locality which quite of late attracted so much interest, 
through Mr. Babbage and Mr. Groyder's enterprises. 

And when the discovery of an extensive saltwater lake, in 
a position formerly assigned to the saline basin of Lake Tor- 
rens, was hailed with universal delight, and when this new 
approach to Central Australia in that direction augurs so 
well for the future, we can be but animated with ardent 
wishes for the welfare of the expeditions now engaged in the 
geographical exploration of the interior of South Australia. 

I had, in distinguishing some of the more interesting of 
these plants, the pleasant opportunity of attaching to several 
of them the names of members of the Philosophical Insti- 
tute, not only as a token of personal respect, but also as an 
appreciation of their services rendered to this society, and as 
a slight acknowledgment of the disinterested manner in 
which they fostered and cultivated science in this country. 


Hedycarya Pseudomorus. 
(H. dentata var. Australasica, Sonder in Linnasa sxviii. p. 228 non Forster.) 

Leaves long petiolated, ovate or lanceolate, acuminate, 
opposite and alternate ; stigma depressed, minutely um- 
bonate ; carpels small, numerous, sessile, densely 
crowded, yellow. 

In the forests from Cape Otway to Wilson's Promontory, 
and probably also in New South Wales. 

I regarded this plant formerly as the type of a new genus, 
and I am indebted to the venerable maecen, Sir William 
Hooker, for information on its correct generic position. The 
learned Dr. Sonder referred it to Hedycarya dentata from 
New Zealand, -not having seen its fruit. It is not a little 
surprising, that hitherto, of the numerous New Zealandian 

64 New Australian Plants. 

forest trees, only Pomaderris elllptica and Fagus fusca (the 
black birch of the New Zealand colonists) have been identified 
with Australian or Tasmanian trees, whilst, according to 
Dr. Hooker's flora of New Zealand, many of the shrubs, 
and a considerable portion of the herbaceous plants, proved 
identical with ours. 


Flowers unisexual, female ones racemose apetalous ; 
male ones unknown. Calyx subglobose, perforated at 
the apex, circumcised ; germens numerous, sessile ; styles 
none ; stigma depressed, conical ; carpels drupaceous, 
succulent, borne by the fleshy calyx ; embryo minute 
at the base of a copious albumen. 

A tree of eastern subtropical Australia, with exception of 
the ovaries smooth, with opposite short stalked coriaceous ob- 
long or lanceolate ovate leaves, which are remotely serrated 
or entire, with a yellow calyx and black drupes. 

I distinguish this interesting genus most regardfully with 
the name of one of the Vice-Presidents of the Institute, and 
regret that the specimens in my possession do not admit of a 
more perfect characteristic. 

Wilkiea calyptrocalyx. 
On subsaline banks of the Brisbane River. Hill & Mueller. 

Nephelium tomentosum. 

(Sect. Arytera.) 

Branchlets, rachis of leaves and panicles brownish-tomen- 
tose ; leaves on short petioles ; leaflets in two to four 
pairs, opposite, oblique ovate, or ovate lanceolate, acu- 
minate, serrated, above at last glabrous, beneath downy, 
with very short stalks; terminal pair the largest; pani- 
cles axillary and lateral ; divisions of the calyx 5, acute ; 
style trifid at the apex, carpels twin or ternate, ovate 
globose, often somewhat compressed, tomentose. 

On the Brisbane River. Hill & Mueller. 

A middle-sized beautiful tree. 

New Australian Plants. 65 

Boronia granulata. 

(Sect. Zieria.) 

Branchlets nearly glabrous, densely tubercled; leaves all 
trifoliolate, short stalked ; leaflets linear, with revolute 
margin, like the petiols scantily tubercled, above gla- 
brous, beneath velutinous; cymes pedunculate, many 
flowered, shorter than the leaf, puberulous ; segments of 
the calyx deltoid-ovate, acuminate, three or four times 
shorter than the petals ; stamens and style nearly smooth ; 
stigma four-lobed ; anthers roundish ; carpels blunt. 

Interior of New South "Wales. Sir Thomas Mitchell. 


Xanthoxylon brachyacanthum. 

(Sect. Ehetsa.) 

Glabrous, branchlets and peduncles furnished with short 
straight prickles ; leaves alternate, unarmed, with 3 to 
5 pairs of leaflets, and a wingles rachis ; leaflets short- 
stalked, ovate or broad lanceolate, blunt acuminate, en- 
tire or somewhat repand; panicles much shorter than 
the leaves. 

In the Araucaria forests of Moreton Bay. Hill & Mueller. 


Lasiopetalum WilhelmiL 

Leaves oblong-lanceolate, rounded at the base, flat at the 
margin, above glabrous, beneath velvety; cymes with 
crowded flowers and short peduncles ; lower bracteole 
linear ; segments of the upper bracteole lanceolate, of 
equal length ; calyx longer than the bracteole, outside 
velvety, inside glabrous, with ovate-deltoid segments ; 
anthers bursting at their whole length ; germen trilocular, 
velvety ; style smooth at the apex. 

On the summit of the northern mountains of the Gram- 
pians. Wilhelmi. 

A species, like L. micranthum, somewhat abnormal, in 
bivalved anthercells. 


66 New Australian Plants. 

Bergia tripetala. 

Annual, procumbent, glandless; stems and branches downy; 
leaves lanceolate-ovate, minutely serrated, smooth ; ver- 
ticills many-flowered; pedicels glabrous, shorter or as 
long as the calyx; flowers trimerous; petals ovate, 
blunt, somewhat longer than the calyx ; stigmas very 
short ; capsule slightly furrowed, longer than the calyx, 
with very thin dissepiments ; seeds brown ; testa latticed. 

At the confluence of the rivers Murray and Darling. 

Three other species of this genus are discovered in tropic 
Australia, during Mr. Gregory's expedition. 

Pseudanthus ovalijolius. 

Leaves oval, rarely oblong or orbicular, opposite or crowded, 
on very short petioles, at the mid-rib scabrous ; seg- 
ments of the male flowers spathulate, linear ; exterior 
filaments twice or three times longer than the anthers, 
interior ones many times longer than the globose ovate 

In vallies at the Grampians, the Serra and Victoria ranges. 
C. Wilhelmi. 


Geum renifolium. 

Root without runners ; stem simple, one-flowered, with 
simple and with short jointed glandbearing downs ; 
stipules broad, ciliated, in front toothed ; leaves hirsute, 
radical ones pinnatisected ; lateral segments in one to 
three pairs, minute or wanting, terminal one large, 
kidney-shaped, crenate and short-lobed ; leaves of the 
stem small, distant, cordate, or orbicular ovate, deeply 
toothed; bracteoles oblong-lanceolate, nearly emarginate, 
half as long as the calyx ; segments of the calyx broad- 
ovate, nearly acuminate, outside hirsute; petals 

awns half-exesrted, hairy, not jointed, at the revolute 
apex naked. 

On Mount Laperouse, Van Diemen's Land. Stuart and 

New Australian Plants. 67 

Rubus Moorei. 

Shrubby, dioecious ; branches terete, as well as the petioles 
copiously beset with reflexed short prickles ; leafs pal- 
mate ; leaflets five or three, stalked, ovate or lanceolate- 
ovate, acute, on both pages of equal colour, above 
glabrous, beneath velvety-tornentose, inucronulate-serru- 
lated, at the rounded base entire ; stipules linear, 
deciduous, teethless ; panicles axillary, on very short 
peduncles, with minute prickles; bracts ovate, acumi- 
nate ; segments of the tomentose calyx ovate, blunt, 
equal, shorter than the corolla, but longer than the 

Clarence River. C. Moore. 

It differs from the New Zealandian Rubus Australis in 
shorter acute, but not acuminate leaves, in ovate bracts, in a 
larger calyx, and in stamens shorter than the calyx. 

The fruit is, according to Mr. Moore, blackish-red. 

Rubus Hillii. 

Shrubby, hermaphrodite ; branches terete, grey-tomentose, 
as well as the petioles beset with reflexed short prickles ; 
leaves simple, cordate, with three to five short acuminate, 
somewhat angular lobes, above scantily hairy, beneath 
grey-velutinous, at the margin short toothed; teeth 
unequal, acute ; nerves and innovations ferrugineous ; 
stipules and bracts fringelike-laciniated, together with 
the calyx silky-tomentose ; panicles at last much spread- 
ing ; calyx as long as the petals ; its divisions acuminate, 
the inner ones smaller. 

On the Brisbane River. Hill. 

Allied to R. Lambertianus (Ser. in D. C. prodr. ii., 576). 



Tube of the calyx bellshaped, below connate with the base 
of the ovary ; limb five-lobed ; petals five, inserted to a 
ring, which surrounds the faux of the calyx; stamens 
numerous, free ; outer ones sterile, longer than the petals, 
with rather large inapert anthers ; inner ones thinner, 
nearly as long as the corolla, with round bi-celled 
anthers, which open by longitudinal slits; anthers all 
dorsifixed, with a terminal minute gland ; ovary three- 
celled, with numerous ovules ; style cylindrical ; stigma 

68 New Australian Plants. 

short-bilobed ; capsule ovate, half emersed, loose, three- 
celled ; its valves thin ; seeds small, numerous. 
A tree of eastern subtropical Australia, with generally 
ternate linear at the margin revolute exstipulate leaves, and 
with axillary and terminal pedunculate white flowers. 
A genus allied to Metrosideros and Pericalymma. 

Lysicarpus ternifolius. 

On low mountains between the Dawson and Mackenzie 
River. Also on Darling Downs according to a specimen 
communicated by Mr. C. Moore. 

This tree is esteemed for its excellent timber. 

Euchilus cuspidatus. 
Tall, much branched ; branchlets thin, downy ; leaves 
small, ternate, heart-shaped, nearly sessile, cusjiidate, 
mucronate, flat, glabrous, entire; stipules setaceous, 
persistent, much shorter than the leaves ; pedicels thread- 
like, the fruit-bearing ones a little longer than the 
leaves ; bracteoles linear-setaceous, scarcely shorter than 
the calyx; lower lip of the calyx much reflexed, but 
little longer than the other ; pod turgid, ovate, glabrous, 
On forest ridges around Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 


Panax elegans, Moore and Mueller. 

Arborescent, unarmed; leaves long, simply or double 
pinnate ; leaflets in three to seven pairs, opposite, ovate, 
acuminate, acute at the base, entire, veined, glabrous, 
shining above, paler and opaque beneath; racemes very 
numerous, spreading, collected in one ample decompound 
panicle ; peduncles thinly velutinous ; flowers puberu- 
lous, longer than the pedicels ; styles very short, scarcely 
recurved ; berries round, compressed, two-rarely three- 

Richmond River. C. Moore. Moreton Bay. Hill and 

A magnificent plant, attaining a considerable size. Its 
timber was exhibited at Paris, under the name Aralia elegans. 

New Australian Plants. 69 

Senecio drymophilus. 

Perennial, erect, scarcely branched, pubescent ; leaves suc- 
culent, oblong or obovate-spatulate, almost entire or 
remotely toothed, flat; inferior ones tapering into a 
petiol; superior ones clasping with a cordate base; 
peduncles long, terminal, one- or few-headed, with dis- 
tant bracts; scales of the cylindrical involucre 12-16, 
acute, nearly as long as the disk; ligules wanting; 
achenes thin, cylindrical, brown, smooth, streaked, half 
as long as the pappus. 

In irrigated forest-valleys of Moreton Bay. Hill and 

Senecio primulifolius. 

Perennial ; stem simple, erect or ascending, at the base 
silky-tomentose ; radical leaves crowded, blunt, cordate 
ovate, repand, stalked ; beneath or on both sides cob- 
webbed ; stem-leaf solitary, clasping, oblong or pandu- 
rate, sharply toothed ; peduncles two or three, terminal, 
with a leaflike bract, woolly; involucre broad bellshaped, 
with 16-18 lanceolate-linear leaflets, scantily cobwebbed, 
twice as long as its laxe bracts, and of equal length with 
■the disk, bearded at the apex; ligules several, conspi- 
cuous ; achens glabrous, nearly three times shorter than 
the pappus. 

On Mount Laperouse, south-western Tasmania. C. Stuart, 
A. Oldfield. 

Senecio papillosus. 

Perennial; stem simple, pubescent, densely hairy at the 
base, with a solitary flowerhead; radical leaves small, 
crowded, spathulate-ovate, entire, gradually tapering 
into the petiol, with slightly reflexed margin, above from 
papills very rough, beneath imperfectly hairy ; stem- 
leaves narrow or linear-lanceolate, sessile, scarcely 
toothed ; involucre almost hemispherical ; leaflets 20 to 
22 lanceolate linear, at the apex sphacelate and bearded, 
at the back scantily hairy and papillose, as long as the 
disk ; bracts half or nearly as long as the involucre, 
appressed, ligules several, conspicuous ; achens glabrous, 
of half the length of the pappus. 

On Mount Laperouse, Van Diemen's Land. C. Stuart, 
A. Oldfield. 

70 New Australian Plants. 

Trineuron scapigerum. 

Erect ; stem scapelike, puberulous ; leaves lanceolate- or 
spathulate-linear, acute ; radical ones crowded, tapering 
into a fringed petiol ; stem-leaf solitary, like tke bract 
sessile, tkeir lateral nerves obliterated ; flowerkeads a 
few, terminal, densely crowded, or forming a corymb 
with, leafy bracts ; leaflets of tke involucre 8-12, oblong, 
witk tkree pellucid nerves, kardly coriaceous ; all flowers 
four-tootked ; style of the female flowers skort-bifid, of 
tke male ones scarcely divided. 

Witk tke two preceding plants, discovered by C. Stuart 
and A. Oldfield. 

Goodenia teucriifolia. 
Annual, pubescent ; stems slender, procumbent ; leaves 
skort-stalked, nearly membraneous, ovate lanceolate, or 
tke upper ones narrow lanceolate, all acute, serrated ; 
peduncles axillary, 1-3-flowered, pedicels witk two 
bracteols; segments of tke calyx nearly setaceous, as 
long as tke tube ; corolla glabrous ; style almost smootk ; 
cilia? of tke indusium very skort ; capsule small, ovate, 
or nearly globose ; dissepiment scarcely kalf tke lengtk 
of tke valves; seeds few, small, ovate-oblong, shining, 
brownish yellow, comparatively thick, with subtil dots, 
and a thin margin. 
In the fissures of rocks, on the Glasshouse mountains of 
Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

Goodenia amplexans. 
Suffruticose, erect, glandulous -pubescent; branches terete, 
foliate ; leaves oblong or ovate, witk a keartskaped clasp- 
ing base, sessile, acute, minutely tootked ; flowers 
solitary, two or tkree, axillary ; peduncles skorter tkan 
tke tube of tke calyx, bractless ; segments of tke calyx 
knear-subulate, a little skorter tkan tke calyx ; style 
villose ; indusium conspicuously ciliate ; antkers blunt ; 
capsule ellipsoid ovate, to a tkird of its length bilocular; 
cells few-seeded ; seeds livid, marginate, nearly smooth. 
Ridges and gullies near Adelaide. 
Parsonsia. R. Brown. 
(Sect. Gastrantlius.J 

Calyx without scales ; lobes of the corolla in preflorescence 
valvate, tube ventricose, faux bearded ; filaments free ; 

New Australian Plants, 71 

anthers dilated at the base, with blunt short lobes; 
hypogynous disk crenated. 

Parsonsia ventricosa. 

Climbing, leaves almost membraneous, ovate or lanceolate, 
long acuminate, short-stalked, with rounded or emargi- 
nate base, smooth ; umbells nearly capitate ; peduncles 
slender, as well as pedicels and calyces puberulous ; calyx 
deeply five-cleft, with rhomboid ovate pointed segments, 
half as long as the corolla tube; lobes of the corolla 
lanceolote, acuminate, of the length of the tube, glabrous; 
filaments much shorter than the half exserted anthers. 

Vallies of the Pine Eiver. Hill and Mueller. 

Melodinus, Forster. 
(Sect. Dichostemma.) 
Faux of the corolla with a double series of bifid scales, 
five in each series ; upper ones inserted to the base of 
the corolla lobes, alternate with the inferior larger ones. 

Melodinus acutiflorus. 

Leaves lanceolate, flat, entire, blunt-acuminate, above 
glabrous , shining, beneath paler, puberulous ; primary 
veins distant, divided, spreading; peduncles axillary, 
with two or three rarely single flowers, downy ; bracts 
lanceolate subulate ; segments of the calyx lanceolate, 
long pointed; lobes of the corolla lanceolate linear, acute; 
faux densely bearded. 

On the Brisbane River. Hill and Mueller. 



Calyx bell-shaped, five-cleft; corolla campanulate, somewhat 

funnel-shaped, five-cleft, indistinctly lipped ; lobes 

oblong, the upper two broadest ; stamens four, inserted 

to the base of the corolla, inclosed, two longer ; anthers 

kidney-shaped, one-celled, attached with their back to 

the linear filaments ; style simple, filiform ; stigma 

dilated; capsule globose ovate, two-celled, loculicidal; 

valves bifid at the apex ; seeds in each cell one or two, 

fixed to the base of the free dissepiments, kidney-shaped, 


A shrub of Southern Australia, with velutinous branches, 

with alternate lanceolate flat nearly glabrous undivided 

leaves, which are articulated at the base, sessile or short 

72- New Australian Plants. 

stalked, with short axillary or terminal one or few-flowered 
peduncles, and nearly white flowers. 

This pretty genus, to which I attached the name of our 
friend Dr. Rich. Eades, differs from Anthocercis in a nearly 
bilabiate corolla, one-celled anthers, and few-seeded capsule. 

Eadesia anthocercidea. 
Shady places in the ranges near Mount Zero. C. Wilhelmi. 



Flowers hermaphrodite, symmetrical, in racemes; sepals 

four, spathulate linear, recurved at the apex, deciduous ; 

stamens four, inserted near the middle of the sepals ; 

filaments longer than the anthers ; connective protruding 

beyond the linear anther cells ; hypogynous annulus 

denticulated ; germen sessile ; style filiform, deciduous ; 

stigma vertical, continuous, blunt, upwards but slightly 

thickened ; capsule nearly woody, dehiscent on one side; 

seeds unknown. 

A tree of oriental subtropical Australia, with leaves three 

in a whorl or rarely opposite, lanceolate or oblong, flat, with 

pointed teeth, or above the base entire, net-veined, with 

stomata at the lower side; racemes terminal pedunculate; 

flowers twine, with a solitary bract. 

A beautiful genus, allied to Adenostephanus, Orites and 
Xylomelum, dedicated to John Macadam, Esq., M.D., the 
talented and deserving Secretary of our Institute. 

Macadamia ternifolia. 

In forests on the Pine River of Moreton Bay. Hill and 

Explanation of the Plate. — 1. Bract and pedicels, 2. Unexpanded 
flower. 3. Half-expanded flower. 4. Expanded flower. 5. Germen 
and annulus. 6 7 8. Anthers. 9 10. Fruit (natural size) . All parts, 
except 9 and 10, more or less magnified. 

Grevillea Hilliana. 

Branchlets brown silky, leaves large, ovate oblong, blunt, 
entire or pinnatifid, cuneate at the base, flat, net-veined, 
above glabrous, beneath silvery-silky ; their segments 
oblong lanceolate ; racemes axillary and lateral, solitary, 
pedunculate, silky, densely many-flowered; bracts minute, 
lanceolate, deciduous ; calyx small, inside and style gla- 

(Nature T&umntf") 

-LuJhijicjIJt-cTceT Direr.'r 


Neio Australian Plants. 73 

brous ; stigma orbicular, nearly lateral, umbonate at its 
In forests at the Pine River of Moreton Bay. Hill and 

A magnificent forest tree, which I wished to bear the name 
of its discoverer, Mr. Walter Hill, the Director of the Botanic 
Gardens of Brisbane. 


Polygonum Linne. 

(Sect. Homalooladium.) 

Branches flat, almost leafless ; flowers axillary ; calyx five- 
cleft ; stamens 7-8 ; styles 3 ; stipules minute. 

Polygonum patycladum. 

Perennial, glabrous ; stem erect, towards the base nearly 
terete, near the branches compressed; branches quite 
compressed, leaflike, articulated, streaked, nearly trans- 
parent, either leafless or with a few oblong or hastate 
lanceolate leaves, which are short stalked and acute at 
the base ; bracts and stipule short, with fringeless margin ; 
flowers solitary, or a few lateral; styles at the base 
On moist places of New Caledonia. Shepherd. 
Although the fruit is unknown, and the plant so dissimilar 
to other Polygonums, there can be scarcely a doubt of its 
belonging to this genus. In habit it resembles some leafless 
flat-branched Phyuanthi. 

Blitum cristatum. 

Procumbent, somewhat downy and glandulous ; stems 
imperfectly streaked ; leaves on long petioles, rhomboid 
or oblong ovate, acute, at the base blunt, at the apex with 
blunt teeth ; glomerules axillary, many-flowered ; fruit- 
bearing calyx dry, closed, acuminate, with cristate wings ; 
seeds smooth and shining, with a nearly acute margin. 

In the desert on the Murray, Darling and Lake Torrens. 

Allied to B. carinatum. 

Rhagodia nitrariacea. 

Shrubby, erect or diffuse ; branches spreading or reclined; 
branchlets divaricate, grey, spinescent ; leaves alternate 
fasciculate, oblong- or spathulate-linear, blunt, quite 

74 New Australian Plants. 

entire, nearly smooth, gradually narrowed at the hase ; 

branches of the panicle short and rigid ; flowers sessile 

Throughout the interior of Australia, from Arnhem's Land 
to Lake Torrens, the Murray River and its tributaries. 
In habit resembling Nitraria Billardierii. 

Chenopodium microphyllum. 

Perennial, prostrate, much branched ; leaves minute, ovate 

or lanceolate, stalked, entire, above green, beneath 

powdery-grey ; glomerules spikate, few-flowered, on very 

short peduncles; calyx five-cleft, scarcely ribbed; the 

fruit-bearing one imperfectly closed ; seeds black, slightly 

wrinkled, opaque, blunt at the margin ; embryo forming 

a perfect ring. 

Near the Barossa range. Dr. Behr. Also at Enfield, in 

South Australia, and in Bacchus Marsh, generally on slaty 


Atriplex rhagodioides. 

Monoecious, shrubby, erect, grey ; leaves ovate hastate, 
stalked, entire or imperfectly toothed ; female glome- 
rules axillary, male ones in paniculate spikes; fruit- 
bearing calyx rhomboid, without appendages, coriaceous, 
entire, above the middle open; seeds brown; radicule 

In the saline desert on the River Murray and Darling and 
on Lake Torrens. 

Atriplex leptocarpum. 


Monoecious, stems herbaceous, leaves small, ovate or 
rhomboid cuneate, ash-grey, unequally toothed or nearly 
entire ; flowers axillary glomerate or in short spikes ; 
fruit-bearing calyx oblong, compressed, oblique truncate 
or smewhat acute, entire, open only at the apex, smooth 
or with tubereles at the middle ; seeds brown. 

In the desert on the Murray and Darling. 

Atriplex spongiosum. 

Monoecious, suftruticose, ashy-grey ; stems dwarf, erect ; 
leaves small, rhomboid or lanceolate ovate, acute, repand 
or with a few teeth ; flowers in glomerules, or solitary ; 

New Australian Plants. 75 

fruit-bearing calyx nearly globose, spongy, perfectly 
closed, apiculate, without appendages ; seeds black- 
brown, shining, roundish ovate ; radicule superior, 
On salt flats at Lake Torrens ; also on Hooker's Creek 
and Sturt's Creek, in North-western Australia. 

Atriplex inflatum. 
Monoecious, shrubby, erect, ashy-grey ; leaves lanceolote 
or nearly ovate, or rhomboid, quite entire or slightly 
toothed ; flowers in glornerules or solitary ; fruit-bearing 
calyx much enlarged, spongy, nearly turbinate, winged 
by a transverse appendage, acuminate at the apex ; seeds 
brown, shining, nearly round ; radicle inferior. 
Eastern subtropical Australia. Sir Thomas Mitchell. Fre- 
quent in the desert on Lake Torrens, the Murray, Darling, 
Murrumbidgee, Dawson and Burnett River. 


Flowers hermaphrodite, twine, without bracteoles ; calyx 
urceolate, with a five-cleft limb, unarmed, without aj)pen- 
dages, at last indurated ; stamens 3-5 ; filaments subu- 
late linear ; anthers cordate ovate ; styles two, capillary, 
united at the base ; fruit consisting of two, rarely three, 
long, divergent at the base turgid and connate calyces ; 
caryopsis enclosed in the lower part of the calyx ; peri- 
carp membraneous, distinct; seeds depressed, with a 
membraneous testa ; embryo peripherical ; albumen 
central, mealy. 
A diffuse desert shrub of extra-tropical Australia, white 
tomentose, with alternate linear channelled leaves, and axillary 

A genus allied both to Didymanthus and Sclerolama. 

Dissocarpus biflorus. 

In the Murray desert, near Eustone. Scleroltena biflora 
E,. Br. belongs possibly to this plant. 

Echinopsilon sclerolanoides. 
(Eriochiton scleroltenoides. Ferd. Mueller Second Eeport, p. 15.) 

Suffruticose, erect ; leaves narrow lanceolate, acute, as well 
as the branches woolly, downy, younger ones somewhat 
silky; flowers axillary, solitary, forming leafy spikes; 

76 Neio Australian Plants. 

fruit-bearing calyx with its spines involved in a dense 
wool, spines incurved, a little longer than the breadth of 
the calyx; pericarp woolly. 

Desert of Lake Torrens, of the Murray and Darling. 

Another species occurs in eastern subtropical Australia, 
which I may notice here for the sake of completeness. 


Suffruticose, erect, glabrous ; leaves crowded, thin, nearly 
cylindrical, acute ; flowers axillary, solitary ; calyx tur- 
binate hemispherical, scarcely as long as its spines ; one 
spine often bifid. 
This species differs from Anisacantha merely in the position 
of its seeds. 


Flowers hermaphrodite, without bracteoles, solitary; calyx 
minute, five-toothed, at last indurated, five-ribbed, and 
surrounded by an extremely narrow wing ; stamens 3-5 ; 
anthers cordate ovate ; styles two, capillary ; caryopsis 
depressed, enclosed in the long turbinate calyx ; pericarp 
membraneous, distinct ; seeds horizontal ; testa membra- 
neous ; embryo peripherical ; albumen central, mealy. 
A perennial procumbent, villous plant of extra-tropical 

Australia, with alternate linear crowded leaves and axillary 


Sclerochlamys brachyptera. 

Kochia villosa, Lindl. in Mitch. Trop. Australia, p. 91, according to Diagnosis. 
Kochia brachyptera, Ferd. Mueller, Second Gen. Eeport, p. 15. 

In the desert on the Murray, Darling and Lake Torrens. 
Enchylcena R. Br. 

(Sect. Heteroehlamys.) 

Lobes of the fruit-bearing calyx distinct, coriaceous, or at 
least not succulent. 

Enchylana villosa. 

Stems short, herbaceous, procumbent or adscendent ; leaves 
flat, oblong or lanceolate linear, acute, villose ; lobes of 
the^ fruit-bearing calyx pubescent, upwards dilated, free, 
coriaceous, with an inflexed margin ; caryopsis glabrous. 

In loamy plains near Adelaide and in Bacchus Marsh. 

New Australian Plants. 77 


(Ferd. Mueller, Second Gen. Eeport, p. 15.) 

Flowers hermaphrodite, solitary, without bracteoles ; calyx 

minute, short toothed, at last indurated and one-ribbed ; 

stamens three ; anthers ovate ; styles two capillary, joint 

at the base ; caryopsis enclosed in the boney oblique 

globular calyx ; pericarp membraneous, distinct ; seeds 

horizontal, with a membraneous testa ; embryo periphe- 

rical, annular ; albumen central, mealy. 

A perennial glabrous procumbent plant of extra-tropical 

Australia, with numerous short semiterete leaves, with bearded 

axils and minute axillary flowers. 

A genus approaching to Sclerochlamys, Echinopsilon and 

Osteocarpum salsuginosum. 
(Ferd. Mueller, I.e.) 
On the saline plains of Lake Torrens, the Darling and 
Murray River. Also in eastern subtropical Australia, found 
by Sir Thomas Mitehell^ 

Suajda tamariscina, Lindley in Mitch. Trop. Australia, is 
in all likelihood referrable to this plant. 

ART. XI. — On the Introduction of the British Song Bird. By 
Edward Wilson, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute, 4th July, 1857.] 

Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen, — Amongst the various 
kinds of experiment to which I alluded in a Paper lately read 
before the members of this Institution, there is scarcely one 
possessed of more general features of a kind of elegant interest 
than that of introducing into this colony some of the song birds 
of England ; and of thereby relieving the comparative silence of 
our woods and gardens. It seems probable that much might 
be done hi this way, with a very trivial expenditure of either 
money or trouble ; and if even in a single instance we could 
achieve success, I think that we should thereby confer a very 
signal benefit upon the colony at large. It may appear to some 
a trivial thing to be devoting our efforts in such a direction, 

78 On the Introduction of 

while so much has to be done for the colony in matters of 
essential importance. But I confess that I am inclined to attach 
great consequence to the diffusion of these minor delights, 
and to estimate very highly their beneficial effect upon a people. 
There is a peculiar charm about the song of the sky-lark on a 
fine spring morning, or that of the nightingale during one of its 
own calm summer nights, that cannot be adequately described, 
but can never be forgotten by those who have once heard these 
birds. There may be a great deal, doubtless, in the associations 
by which they are surrounded. But it is the peculiar charac- 
teristic of these interesting creatures to so surround themselves, 
and it is the combination of such charms at which we should 
aim, and which I believe we should attain, if we were to follow 
out our experiments with reasonable spirit and perseverance. 
The corn field and the grove we have already spreading around 
us. Why should we delay the attempt to furnish them with 
their most agreeable inhabitants ? 

Before proceeding to consider the chances of success in the 
introduction of any of the native song birds of England itself, 
I would like to say a few words respecting that general favorite — 
the canary. 

I think that there are good reasons for believing that this 
bird might be easily established amongst us in a wild state. In 
corresponding localities of France and Italy, a species of canary 
abounds, and adds greatly to the melody of the woods. There 
is nothing in the severity of our winters to interfere with them. 
The seeds of the native grasses, and of the various weeds with 
which even our best cultivated gardens are profusely supplied, * 
furnish food to which they would soon become accustomed. 
They breed readily here hi confinement, and would surely be 
still more likely to do so, if in a more natural condition. 

An experiment with this pretty little bird has this particular 
advantage, too, that it might be tried at once, and with very 
little outlay. Canaries are frequently sold by auction in large 
numbers, and at prices varying downwards to five shillings each, 
so that a few dozens might be purchased and turned loose in 
suitable situations at a very moderate expense. They live long 
here in captivity, and can exist in a wild state, as in watching 
the process of rearing them I have seen them lost occasionally, 
and have been surprised at their return after an interval of a 
few days. 

If an experiment of this nature were to be tried, I think it 
should take place in the spring ; that the birds, probably accus- 
tomed all their lives to the shade, might become habituated by 

the British Song Bird. 79 

degrees to the excessive heats of our summer sun. They should 
be turned loose where water is accessible ; where they might be 
able to return at pleasure to their old food, in their well-known 
cages; and where hi their return they would be free from danger 
from cats ; as while lingering, as they would do, round old 
haunts, they would be very liable to destruction from this quar- 
ter. Before being turned loose, they shoidd be accustomed to 
the use of their wings, by being confined for some time in a 
room, or a very roomy cage. Considerable strength of wing, 
and a free use of it, is essential to their safety, as all new birds 
would be exposed to great annoyance from several of the native 
birds, and, if not equal to them in activity, their attacks might 
be fatal. 

In proceeding to deal with the more purely British song-bird, 
we may pause to ask ourselves which we should first experiment 
upon. In the event of anything being done, I think it would 
be a pity to fritter away attention upon several sorts, and that 
it would be wiser to concentrate our attention upon one or two 
only, till experiments upon them had been fairly tried, and we 
had established them in the colony, or had proved that their 
introduction was impossible. Glancing down the list of larks, 
thrushes, blackbirds, robins, nightingales, linnets, finches, &c, I 
am inclined to think that it woidd be judicious to begin with 
the skylark, and that queen of songsters — the nightingale ; and 
that whatever means may be available would be better expended 
at first in the greatest possible number of individual specimens 
of these two kinds, than in importing a smaller number of 
several of a longer list. By aiming at too much we might fail 
altogether ; while by concentrating our attention in one or two 
directions, we may subject the experiments to a perfectly fair 

I have looked somewhat carefully into the history and habits 
of the nightingale, and I am strongly inclined to believe that it 
might be successfully introduced amongst us. It is found over 
almost all the warmer parts of Europe, a considerable portion 
of Asia, and part of Africa. At the same time it is somewhat 
capricious in its choice of locality. It is not found in Scotland 
or Ireland, nor hi some of the counties of England (Devonshire 
and Cornwall, for instance) which one woidd think best adapted 
to its tastes. It is migratory ; arriving in England about the 
middle of April, and leaving about September, for some portion, 
it is believed, of Asia. 

I have long been impressed with the possibility and desira- 
bility of introducing this bird. A year or two ago, I wrote to 

80 On the Introduction of 

one of my sisters in England, stating my desire to attempt the 
introduction of nightingales, and soliciting her co-operation. 
My sister readily consented, and went np to London for the 
purpose of making the necessary inquiries, and arranging for the 
shipment of some of the birds. In the course of her investiga- 
tion she learned that a gentleman was then resident in London 
who has distinguished himself by great attention to the subject 
of ornithology. I will not mention his name. But if I did, 
you would agree with me in looking upon him as a very high 
authority. It occurred to my sister that it would be very well 
worth while to ask the advice of so experienced a gentleman, 
before proceeding further, and she therefore called upon him ; 
but I regret to say that his opinion was so unfavorable to the 
experiment that all further action was suspended till I could be 
communicated with. The objections to the scheme were 
grounded on the supposition — first, that so delicate a bird as 
the nightingale could not be brought out safely to Australia ; 
and secondly, that if it did arrive, and were turned loose here, 
it would find nothing suitable for its subsistence. He therefore 
pronounced the attempt little better than Quixotic. My sister 
urged in favor of the experiment that seven English skylarks 
had been set free near G-eelong ; and that, years after, they or 
their descendants had been heard singing cheerfully. The gen- 
tleman stated that he altogether doubted the fact ; that there 
was an Australian lark which so nearly resembled the skylark 
of England in its habits that no one but a naturalist could 
distinguish it, and that this must have been the bird alluded to. 
Now, with all deference to so high an authority, I am prepared 
to prove this gentleman wrong in some of his inferences, and I 
think that I am quite justified in distrusting him in others. I 
am afraid that there is too often observable in science a sort of 
pedantry which is lamentably liable to lend itself to obstruction ; 
and I cannot help thinking that there is some trace of it here, 
and that this experiment was thereby somewhat unnecessarily 
disparaged. With reference to the_skylarks turned loose on the 
Barrabool Hills, I had myself kept an eye on the issue of the 
experiment with some interest, and three or four years after they 
were set free I offered a reward of a few pounds to any one who 
would bring me authentic intelligence of them or their offspring. 
A very respectable Scotch mechanic called upon me some time 
after, and told me that he had heard a skylark singing above a 
large flat near the Jim Crow Ranges ; that two lads came up 
while he was listening to it, and that they all distinctly recog- 
nised it as an English skylark. I took the precaution of 

the British Song Bird. 81 

assuring myself, by inquiry, that my informant was a truthful 
and respectable man, and have no doubt at all of the accuracy 
of his statement. I learned from several other quarters that 
the larks had been heard on the Barrabool Hills and in other 
directions. As far as I can recollect they were turned loose 
about the year 1850. About a year and a-half ago, Mr. 
Hickenbotham, the draper, in Swanston-street, called at the 
Argus office, to say that he had just heard an English skylark 
at Flemington. I have lately seen Mr. Hickenbotham, and 
questioned him particularly, and he states that he is quite cer- 
tain that it was an English skylark. He says that he is the son of 
an English farmer, over whose fields the skylark sang almost 
incessantly ; that he lived there till the age of manhood, and 
knows the skylark as well as any one can know it. About this 
having been an English skylark he has no doubt whatever. 

As for any Australian lark so nearly resembling the English 
skylark as to be indistinguishable from it, I must plead guilty 
to a strong tendency to scepticism. I would appeal to my 
hearers as to whether any one of them ever heard or saw such a 
bird. I have ridden over the country all the way between this 
and Sydney in one direction, and between this and Portland in 
another, with some vigilant attention to the mam features of 
the natural history of the continent, and I never saw such a 
bird. There is indeed upon our plains a bird somewhat resem- 
bling the skylark in size and color, which flutters upwards while 
it sings ; but its song is little better than a sort of melancholy 
croak. There is as little chance of any one mistaking its voice 
for that of the skylark of England, as there is of anybody mis- 
taking mine for that of Madame Bishop. I confess that with 
regard to the remark I have alluded to, I am utterly at sea. 

I will now show that in some of his predictions the expe- 
rienced naturalist was completely wrong. While making some 
further inquiries, and hesitating what my next step should be 
to test the experiment, I noticed some months ago the arrival 
here of a well-known bird-dealer, with a great variety of English 
song birds, including five healthy nightingales. I immediately 
put myself in communication with him, agreed for a price for 
his nightingales, and was kindly furnished with a great deal of 
information upon the whole subject of the shipment of birds. 
Mr. Brown is a partner in a concern long largely engaged in 
this business, and having branch establishments hi various parts 
of the world — Germany, London, Paris, New York, Valparaiso, 
San Francisco, &c. Mr. Brown had brought out by this ship 
an assortment of birds, comprising nightingales, blackbirds, 


82 On the Introduction of 

thrashes, starlings, goldfinches, linnets, skylarks, robins, wood- 
larks, and chaffinches. By way of testing the accuracy of the 
warning as to the difficulty of bringing any of them across the 
sea, I asked particularly how many of his English birds Mr. 
Brown had lost during the voyage. His answer was, " Not one 
by death. I have every English bird I started with, but one 
blackbird, which got out of its cage at sea, and flew overboard." 

So much for the impossibibty of bringing them out. As to 
the fear of their meeting no suitable sustenance here, I can only 
say that the nightingale is insectivorous ; and I think that few 
of my hearers who know anything of the country districts of 
this colony, will feel inclined to fear any fatal scarcity for an 
insect-eating bird. Every tree swarms with life of one kind or 
other all through the year ; and it seems absurd to suppose that 
a bird with little else to do but to feed itself, should have any 
difficulty in finding amply sufficient insects to keep itself in 
health and comfort. In the course of an experiment with the 
nightingales brought out by Mr. Brown, I had to take charge of 
one of them for several weeks, and watching its habits atten- 
tively, was very much struck by the activity and astonishing 
rapidity with which it would dart upon any insect that came 
near its cage. It takes a sharp bird to catch the house-fly, but 
the nightingale rarely missed it. I saw quite sufficient to con- 
vince me that in a country so beset with insects as this, there 
was very little danger of starvation for a bird that fed on 

The result of the experiment with these nightingales has not, 
I regret to say, been very successful, further than in furnishing 
us with some hints for future operations. And here I would 
repeat a remark that I made in my last Paper, that the most 
essential quality in those who undertake this kind of experi- 
ment, is the spirit to meet rebuffs. The original outlay, or the 
little thought or care required for an experiment, appear to me 
to be trivial matters, as compared with that dogged determi- 
nation to succeed, which refuses to be daunted by difficulties, 
and is rather spurred on to greater efforts by even mortifying 

Having succeeded, by the aid of a very enthusiastic naturalist — 
Dr. Barry, of the Gardiner's Creek Boad — in raising the neces- 
sary sum for the purchase of the five nightingales I have spoken 
of, they were conveyed to the Botanical Gardens, and placed in 
a large cage prepared for them. But almost the first night the 
native cats attacked them, killing one, and slightly injuring one 
of the others. Having made arrangements to prevent a repe- 

the British Sung Bird. 83 

tition of the attacks, we left them for a few days, to accustom 
them to the cage, and we then let them out as quietly as possible. 
While watching them after their liberation, we found, to our 
great dismay, that only two out of the four could fly, and that 
the others ran along the ground in so helpless a condition as to 
render themselves very liable to injury from an enemy of any 
kind. With some little difficulty we caught these two again, 
and found their wings in so ragged a state from their restless 
habits in their small cages, that it was no wonder that flying 
was out of the question. We got then wings pulled, and I took 
charge of them till such time as the feathers had grown again. 
But one of them was either ill, or had got injured hi being 
recaught, and died the next clay ; and the other, after having 
lived apparently healthy, but in a curiously ragged condition, for 
several months, seemed to find one of our frosty nights too cold 
for it, and, although eating heartily the clay before and sheltered 
in a tolerably warm room, it was found dead in the morning. 
The two which were left in the gardens were seen once or twice, 
and upon several occasions passers on the river informed Mr. 
Brown that they had been heard to sing. Tor some time no 
news was received of them. The nightingale is, however, a very 
shy bird. It lurks in the most leafy recesses of the thicket, and 
scores of them might hide themselves in so suitable a place for 
their reception as is furnished by some portion of the Botanical 
Gardens, without giving any note of their whereabouts. A 
short time ago, however, I was delighted to hear that one of 
them had been both seen and heard singing, by Mr. Wilhemie, a 
German gentleman engaged at the Botanical Gardens. I called 
upon Mr. Wilhehne, and he showed me the precise tree near his 
cottage where it was perched. It appeared very healthy, sang 
cheerfully, and was undoubtedly a nightingale. Of this Mr. Wil- 
hehne had no doubt whatever. He is a gentleman of education 
and respectability ; has lived hi parts of Germany in which the 
nightingale is quite common, and speaks quite confidently of the 
fact. Next to the pleasure with which I heard that one at least 
of the birds was doing well in the spot in which it was turned 
loose several months ago, was the surprise occasioned by the 
fact that it had allowed so large a portion of our winter to pass 
away, without showing any disposition to obey its natural instinct 
of migration. 

An experiment on this small scale was scarcely likely to be 
very successful. Nature is profuse in her supply, and if we 
imitate or supplement nature we must be tolerably liberal too. 
At the same time, if we went systematically to work, and did 

84 On the Introduction of 

not experiment upon more than one or two sorts of birds at a 
time, we might accord to each a fair trial without any very 
great individual efforts. We had to give Mr. Brown four or five 
pounds each for his nightingales, and considering that it was his 
peculiar business, I did not think the price an extravagant one. 
But if they were brought out in numbers direct, bought on 
reasonable terms in England or Germany, and entrusted to the 
care of some intelligent cabin passenger, with the paid assistance 
of a steerage passenger, in some of our clipper ships, I think 
they ought to be landed here at probably one-fourth of that 
sum. They should be examined on landing, their wings put to 
rights, and they should then be allowed to exercise themselves 
for a time in a moderate-sized room. The Botanical Gardens 
have many advantages as a place to set them free, and of course 
it would be of great importance to have them as near as possible 
to Melbourne, so that their song, if they ever did become 
established, might delight as large a number of hearers as pos- 
sible. But close neighbourhood to town would be objectionable, 
as exposing them to destruction at the hands of the cockney 
shooters, who abound there, and who are apt to show themselves 
less anxious as to the size or value of their game, than glad to 
get something alive to shoot at. After some consideration it 
strikes me that the best place that could be selected, at which 
to set them free, would be amongst the well-grown umbrageous 
gardens and orchards on the banks of the Yarra about Heidel- 
berg. The nightingale has qualities very favorable for diffusion. 
They are not gregarious. Intense jealousy of each other's song- 
seems to separate them from one another. And as the notes of 
this astonishing little vocalist can be heard at the distance of a 
mile, there is every hope that if we can secure their being 
numerous, their haunts will soon extend over a considerable 
space. Started at Heidelberg, I believe they would soon make 
their way up and down the river, stationing themselves wherever 
they found an enticing thicket, and rapidly spreading further 
and further in accordance with their usual instinct. As winter 
comes on I think they would fly northward, and perhaps take 
up their quarters temporarily in some warm locality on the 
Murray, or still more northerly part. But if they bred, with us 
they would return to their old breeding places in the spring, as 
they are particularly faithful to old haunts. Particular birds 
have been known to return to the same place for years in 

The experiment should be made in the spring, as soon as the 
warm days come round, and insects become numerous. To give 

the British Song Bud. 85 

it a fair trial I think that three relays of ten birds each, properly 
mated, should be turned out at intervals of a month, for three 
years in succession. Their favorite food shoidd be left accessible, 
that they might be driven only gradually to find their own. If 
we could get them at anything like the price I have mentioned, 
this would cost us about thirty or forty pounds a-year, or a 
hundred or hundred and twenty pounds in all. But if it cost 
us twice that sum I think that properly divided amongst us it 
would be a very insignificant price to pay for such an addition 
to the general stock of hajjpiness — such an addition to the 
various attractions of the colony, as this magnificent songstress 
would unquestionably be. Such interest do I take in the expe- 
riment that if it should be taken up by any one else, with a 
spirit likely to lead to its success, I would willingly subscribe to 
aid in giving it a fair trial ; but in any event, I will try what I 
can do in that way myself, and, with fife and health, it shall go 
hard with me if I do not succeed. 

If it be deemed advisable to add to the stock of skylarks 
which may now be in the colony, I think that they would be 
much more easily managed. The neighbourhood of any corn 
field near town would suit them ; although they shoidd be let 
loose in a place where corn is left to ripen, not cut as hay, as 
the removal of the latter might destroy their nests. They 
should be bought cheaply enough. In one of the works to 
which I have referred, I find it stated that from the neighbour- 
hood of Dunstable alone 4000 dozen of these birds are annually 
sent to London for the table ; and if consigned in such numbers 
to so pitiable a fate, we surely might get cheaply a few dozens 
for conversion to a very much better purpose. 

I am encouraged to think that these experiments would 
answer, as Mr. Brown tells me that he and his partners have 
already succeeded in introducing both the nightingale and the 
skylark into the neighbourhood of New York. He assures me 
that the one is heard constantly in the cemetery of that 
city, a place less suited for it than our Botanical Gardens, and 
that the other is heard carolling joyfully over the corn fields in 
that State, just as it does in England. 

If we succeed with these, we might then proceed to other 
kinds, although it might be questionable how far it would be 
expedient to bring out some of them, particularly fruit-eating 
kinds. This will, I think, one day be a great fruit country, and 
such birds as live mainly upon fruit might become more a 
trouble than a benefit. They might even teach the native birds 
to imitate them, for some of my country friends have told me 

86 On the Introduction of 

that many of the indigenous birds are quite sufficiently disposed 
to be troublesome in this way, as soon as they find out what the 
fruit is. 

Incidental to this subject, I may mention that a very inte- 
resting list was lately sent me by some intelligent man connected 
with the Botanical Gardens, of the various birds frequenting 
that locality. Many of my hearers will be surprised to learn 
that nineteen different kinds of water-birds, and no fewer than 
sixty-three kinds of land birds, are to be seen at one time or 
other in these gardens. The list is very carefully prepared, 
showing the arrival and departure of such as are migratory, and 
the time of building of many ; and also attaching to each the 
volume and page in which it figures in Gould's great illustrated 
work. The list is very well worthy of publication. 

The committee appointed by the Legislative Assembly to 
consider the subject of the introduction of new animals, has just 
brought up a report recommending the annual expenditure of 
three thousand pounds in experiments of this kind. I trust that 
the House will give encouragement to this sort of enterprise. 
But I regret to notice that the mention of such a scheme is but 
too apt to provoke what I cannot but consider a very ill-placed 
levity. Considering the resources of the country, and its not 
only undeveloped but unknown capabilities, I do not think that 
a moderate amount could be more beneficially bestowed, than in 
the introduction of new and interesting animals. I have no 
idea of living in a half-fiirnished country, when, with a little 
spirit, it could be amply supplied with almost all that could 
contribute to our enjoyment. Would it not be worth the while 
of this Institute to keep an eye upon this probable annual grant, 
and, if confirmed by the Assembly, endeavour to secure some 
voice in its application ? Perhaps it might not be out of place 
to petition Parliament to set apart a sum for such a purpose. 
The expression of opinion of the Philosophical Institute would 
have considerable weight, and might have a beneficial tendency 
towards checking that disposition to sneer at undertakings of 
the kind, to which I have already alluded as so singularly 
characterising our Legislature. 

Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen, there is a principle in social 
organisation which appears to me to have been hitherto very 
imperfectly developed, but which, if develoj)ed, I think would 
lead to very astonishing results. I allude to the principle of 

By combination of effort we achieve most satisfactory and 
often wonderful effects. But we do not seem to systematise and 

the British Song Bird. 87 

adopt this as we should do ; or elevate it in our estimation to 
anything like its proper position. I will endeavour to show 
what I mean by one or two familiar illustrations. If any one 
of us desired to possess a Crystal Palace, like that now glitter- 
ing at Sydenham, the desire would be a hopeless one. Inclivi- 
vidual effort would not supply it. Yet by combination the 
Crystal Palace is there, and any working man may have the 
use of it for a shilling. If any of us wanted to send a letter to 
England within fifty days, it would cost him several thousand 
pounds. By combination it is taken safely and rapidly for 
sixpence. If Life and death depended upon the instantaneous 
transmission of a message to Sydney, as an individual effort it 
would be all but impossible. By combination it is done easily 
for five shillings. Yet is all this combination to a great extent 
unconscious and involuntary. The principle is not intelligently 
systematised and made the most of. Government is a form of 
combination, and one that I believe to be capable of very much 
more perfect development than the world has ever yet seen. 
But all Government is sadly apt to rim into jobbery, extrava- 
gance and mismanagement. Could we divest it of this peculiarity 
we should attain an organisation of a very effective character, 
through whose agency most surprising results might be educed. 
At present, for instance, contributing eight or ten pounds each 
to the national revenue, the taxes press very lightly upon us all. 
Suppose that without adding to the disposition to extravagance 
and waste, we determined to contribute twice that amount, which 
I believe we easily might do, what a magnificent fund woidd be 
at our disposal, to multiply rapidly amongst us all the enjoy- 
ments of civilised life ! With a good Government, taxation is 
not a dram upon our individual finances, but a very economical 
investment for the multiplication of conveniences. And for my 
part I think it indicative of something very like stupidity, for 
people to be contented to live in a country but half supplied 
with the requirements of civilisation, when most of them are 
readily enough attainable, if we choose to have them. 

But failing satisfactory Governmental combination, much may 
be done by combination under other auspices. And in the 
elaboration of this principle I believe that there is an undug 
field very well worthy the attention of the inquiring mind. It 
seems to me that the essence of effective combination is to be 
found hi the general appreciation of its power, and the defe- 
rential homage consequent upon that warm appreciation. Thus, 
when asked to combine for any object, we ought generally less 
to dwell upon the particular object itself than to indicate our 

88 On a Suggestion for a 

fidelity to a great principle of acknowledged value. By such 
aids the whole surface of the earth might rapidly be changed, 
unproved and beautified ; and the air, the earth, and the water 
might be made to swarm with everything calculated to be use- 
ful, interesting and attractive. By aid of this principle of 
combination, not only my friends the nightingale and the sky- 
lark could be added to the birds of this colony within a year, 
but every other British singing bird, at the cost of a penny per 
head to each member of our present population. 

Art. XII. — On a Suggestion for a new Mode of Life Insurance. 
By Professor Wilson, M.A., Melbourne University. 

[Eead before the Institute 5th August, 1857.] 

The object of this paper is to bring forward a suggestion for 
increasing the advantages offered by insurance offices. It does 
not propose any alteration in the present modes of insurance, 
but the addition of another to those already existing. 

According to the most usual system of insurance, a person 
wishing to secure a certain sum of money, to be paid to his 
representatives at his death, contracts to make to the office 
annual payments called premiums, the amount of which depends 
on his age and state of health. 

There are various subsidiary arrangements by which, in some 
instances, the successive premiums are gradually diminished, in 
some the amount insured is increased, and in some instances the 
payment of premiums ceases after a finite term of years. In 
some instances, to which I shall more particularly refer after- 
wards, the payment at death is secured by the payment of a 
single premium. 

It not unfrequently happens that from one cause or another 
persons who have insured are unable to continue the payment 
of their premiums, and, to avoid forfeiture, are compelled to sell 
them, a process which always involves considerable loss. 

The arrangement which I propose is as follows ; and in 
stating it I will, in the first instance, waive all considerations 
arising from the necessity of guarding against fraud or unsound 

Let a table be formed showing, for every age, the single pay- 

new mode of Life Insurance. 89 

nient equitably equivalent to £1 to be paid at death. In other 
words, a table of single premiums payable to insure £1. 

On a person of any age making a payment into the office let 
him be credited with a sum, calculated from this table, as the 
equivalent payment to be made at death. And so for any other 
payments he may make at regular or irregidar intervals. 

If at any time he should wish to draw any sum of money 
from the office, let his account be charged with the correspond- 
ing sum, calculated from same table, as the equivalent payment 
at death. 

The series of transactions will thus partake of the character 
of a deposit account at an ordinary bank, inasmuch as payments 
are made into the office, and drafts made against the amount 
standing to the insurer's credit in the office ; and it will partake 
of the character of an insurance, inasmuch as the whole of the 
accounts between the office and the insurer will have reference 
to one date, viz. the death of the insurer. There will be no calcu- 
lation of interest, but the insurer will secure for his representa- 
tives, on any sum remaining till his death, the accumulation of 
interest corresponding to the average duration of life. 

This system, so far as regards the payments made into the 
office, would differ little from the system of seeming a policy 
by a single premium. The principle of each is the same. Since, 
however, it contemplates smaller and more frequent payments, 
it would be necessary for arrangements to be made for effecting 
these payments without the trouble and formality of taking out 
a fresh policy on every occasion. 

The peculiarity consists in the proposal of one scale of prices 
according to which the office will either sell or purchase an 
insurance ; and by which, consequently, the depositer or insurer 
may know precisely the amount he is entitled at any time to 
draw without the necessity of making any bargain. 

Since the idea of buying and selling according to the same 
scale of prices seems, at first sight, to leave nothing for expense 
of management and profit, it will be necessary for me to enter 
into a short calculation in order to show how this profit may be 
seemed, while the buying and selling from one table is still 
adhered to. 

Let, then A n be the present value of an annuity of £1 a year 
to continue during the lifetime of a person (say John Styles), 
whose age next birthday will be n years, the first payment being 
due one year hence. 

r the interest of £\ for one year. 

Then, on a principle explained by De Morgan in the article 

90 On a Suggestion for a 

" Keversion," in the Penny Cyclopaedia, the present value oi £\ 
payable at the settling day next after the death of John Styles is 

iT^Ct- — A)po^ids. 

John Styles, therefore, on paying -i . ( — — «/ ™*° e 

office, will be credited with £1 payable to his representatives at 
his death. 

After m years from this transaction, the present value of ^l 
payable at the death of John Styles, who will then be n + m 
years old, will be 

r s 1 

T+i\ r 

and, in the event of John Styles wishing to draw the £1 standing 
to his credit as payable at his death, this is the sum to which he 
will be entitled. 

This exceeds his original payment by 

which represents the profit he derives from the investment of 
his original deposit during m years. 

The accumulation of interest on the original deposit during 
these m years, which will be obtained by the office, is 


and if from this we deduct the increase obtained by John Styles 
there remains to the office a balance of 

1+r | — 1 r / - m \ 

"TT^ I+A4. l+r I ~ A n+ m ) 

Now supposing that the tables of the duration of life adopted 
itfcalculating the value of A n could be strictly depended on, and 
supposing also that the assumed rate of interest could always 
be obtained, and no higher rate, then this balance would exactly 
represent the risk of loss to the office during the m years which 
would accrue by the death of John Styles ; and, if a sufficient 


new mode of Life Insurance. 91 

number of cases were taken, would exactly make up these 
losses, leaving no margin for expense of management, loss by 
bad investment of money, depreciation of interest, or profit. 

With the view of supplying this margin, let A (1 — x) be used 
instead of A throughout the previous calculations, i.e., let the 

accurately calcxdated present value of Annuities be all reduced 
in the ratio 1 : 1 — x before they are used to form the table referred 
to ; we shall then have the following sums corresponding to a 
policy of £\ payable at the death of John Styles : — 

Original deposit — — J -A, (1 — x) \ 

Increase or profit on that ,-. . 

deposit when withdrawn after r ^ x ) ( A A _i_ j 

m years l + r x 

True risk incurred ^— — T , 
by office i + r i ~ L — JL.S a TTh— A \ 

as before, and 

Margin to cover expense of management, profit, &c, 

r x ( 

A l + r \—A , 

n 1 n -f- , 

To this profit must be added any that may be derived from 
investing the 'money at a higher rate of interest than that 
assumed for the basis of the table. 

The table which would be required is a table of the value of 

l+r \ r nK J j 

or all values of n. 

The most obvious objection to the plan is the trouble arising 
from the necessity of a medical examination, which, since every 
deposit is, strictly speaking, the opening of a new policy, should 
precede every such deposit. I think, however, that sufficient 
security might be obtained for the office without this. 

The object of the plan is to afford a ready, secure and highly 
unspecidative investment for savings, which furnishes a certain 
and easily calculable but small profit thereon, in case of with- 
drawal ; and some of the security of a life insurance, in case of 

92 New mode of Life Insurance. 

It is not to be expected that any large sums would be so 
invested, because the return would be less than could be obtained 
in other ways, and would only be realised on withdrawing the 

It would, therefore, most probably be found sufficient security 
for the office if the insurer were required to undergo a strict 
medical examination before opening his account with the office, 
and if he were required to attend personally for the purpose of 
making each deposit, and to hold himself on all such occasions 
ready to submit to a further medical examination if it were 
thought necessary. 

If this were the case any unusually large deposit would natu- 
rally excite suspicion, and the reception of the deposit would be 
deferred till after such examination. The medical adviser of 
the office would also, of course, be provided with a list of 
depositers, and would keep a general lookout as to any indication 
of disease. 

It would also probably be necessary to require a notice of 
three or six months before the withdrawal of any large sum. 

In conclusion, I wish to state that this suggestion is not to 
be judged of as one claiming to do great things, but merely as 
an additional convenience to those persons whose incomes are 
so fluctuating as to deter them from encumbering themselves 
with a regular life insurance, and who, at the same time, are 
desirous of investing their savhigs in a way as advantageously 
as possible for their relatives in case of their early death, yet in 
such a manner that they may readily realise them without loss 
in the event of their requiring them. 

PS. — Since reading the preceding Paper I have been informed 
by W. H. Archer, Esq, that the proposed system has been 
adopted by more than one office ; but I have not been furnished 
with the names of the offices or the details of their arrangements 
in time for press. 

W. P. W. 

Sept. 23, 1857. 

Introduction of Useful Plants into Victoria. 93 

Abt. XIII. — On a General Introduction of Useful Plants 
into Victoria. By Dr. Feed. Mueller. 

[Read before the Institute, 30th September, 1857.] 

In responding on this occasion to numerous inquiries, I wish 
to draw attention to some of the most useful plants deserving 
either introduction into this country or a wider diffusion 
throughout our territory. 

But I cannot hope to do within the limits of these pages 
justice to a subject so important and hitherto so scantily re- 
garded, but rather desire to excite the co-operation of abler 
men, and the interest of the community for this purpose. 

During the first periods of colonisation, the immigrants are 
but rarely enabled to direct, their labours beyond immediate 
wants ; and in a colony bike ours, where the midtitude of in- 
habitants were engaged in occupations foreign to husbandry, it 
encountered at least in some of its branches double em- 

But since now a large proportion of our population is re- 
turning gradually from a migratory life to the firm abodes of 
settled communities, the time has arrived, when our thoughts 
should be directed, not only to the means of our present, but 
also of our future prosperity. We ought to be encouraged in 
these views, particularly in regard to tillage, when, considering 
the extensive fertility of this colony, not less than when re- 
flecting on the great advantages of our climate, which neither 
exposes us to the enervating influences of a most tropical 
heat, nor to the inclemency of the severe winters of higher 

Thus rarely favoured, we possess the means of appropriating 
to our colony, not only all the plants of the warm temperate, 
but also many of the colder and even some of the equinoctial. 

When, however, pointing to the possibility of cultivating in 
this country, the products of so different zones, it remains to 
be remembered, that not all tracts of the colony are sharing 
equally and simultaneously this advantage, but on the contrary 
many of its portions are destined for a distinct vegetation. 

It must suffice to describe on this occasion the climatical 
conditions of the colony quite superficially, but henceforth we 
will be better guided in our tillage operations, by inquiries into 
the local peculiarities of our climate, commenced by Mr. Smyth 
with so much zeal and ability. 

In the northern parts of the colony, from the borders of the 


94 On a General Introduction of 

Alps to the western desert we experience, as may expected, a 
drier and warmer temperature, many tracts of it being highly 
adapted for the growth of viae, and probably also of Tobacco, 
Orange, Olive. 

In the southern portion of the colony, under a cooler and a 
moister air, we are invited, particularly in the coast vicinity, to 
the culture of the field-plants of Great Britain. 

In the south-eastern part of our territory the prototypes of 
a tropical vegetation become of such frequent occurrence, that 
probably at a later period, when labour is to be obtained at a 
more equal rate with that of other countries, and (as Mr. 
Savage ingeniously pointed out), under the aid of machinery, 
these tracts of land may furnish, if not for export, at least for 
local consumption, some of the products of less tender plant 
now obtained from Indian plantations. 

Such supposition may appear hazardous, when we reflect on 
the far southern extra tropical position of our colony ; but it 
is evident, that the isothermal bines are bending at our eastern 
frontiers southward to a degree quite unusual, as indicated by 
the occurrence of palm-trees of enormous size (Livistona Aus- 
tralia), in the parallel of Melbourne, accompanied by manifold 
members of a tropical flora, which in vain would be searched 
for in our immediate vicinity. 

I venture to ascribe the serenity of the climate of Eastern 
Gipps Land, already alluded to in an official report on 
my travels, to a combined cause — namely, to the shelter, 
which the high mountain-chains of Van Diemen's Land 
afford to our opposite coast against the cold and antarctic 
breezes, and secondly, to an increase of heat or a mitigation of 
the winter temperature, resulting either directly from the 
southern current of the Pacific Ocean, along the coast of New 
South Wales, or from the indirect influence which so vast an 
expanse of water in ample contact with a wide tropical sea 
must exercise upon the coast tracts. The country referred to 
is. however, not directly available ; dense forests and extensive 
morasses form obstacles at present even to a traveller. But 
with better access to it hereafter, its great humidity, together 
with much facility for irrigation, will render it doubtless emi- 
nently adapted for the growth of rice and other culture plants 
of sub-tropical countries ; rice being ^rown under the same 
isothermal line in Carolina and some parts of South Europe. 
If the Breadfruit 'Artocarpus incisa) which is cultivated a little 
beyond the tropics in South America, adapts itself to our 
climate, it will be at these localities. 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 95 

Two other tracts of country, essentially different from the 
former ones, are of so great an extent, as to attract our notice 
on this occasion, one being the north-western desert, the other 
our subalpine plains and gullies. 

Although, probably by their cultivation little is to be achieved 
of importance, yet a boon may be conferred upon these wilder- 
nesses, if we endeavoured to naturalise there apt plants of 
utility. Thus, from the distribution of the date, which in some 
of the arid parts of Egypt, Persia and Arabia, forms one of the 
principle means of subsistance to the population, we might at once 
benefit from the oases of the Australian deserts. My attention 
was directed by Dr. Greeves, who always evinces so much 
interest for the development of this country's resources, to the 
following passage in Burton's el Medinah ( Vol. II. p. 203), in 
regard to the successful cidtivation of this palm : — " One of the 
reasons of the excellence of the Medinah Dates, is the quantity 
of water they obtain ; each garden or field has its well, and 
even in the hottest weather the Persian well floods the palms 
every third day. It has been observed that the Date Tree lives 
in barren and dry spots, but it loves the beds of streams and 
places where moisture is procurable. The Date-palms scattered 
over the other places of Medinah plains, and depending solely 
on rain-water produce less fruit, and that of inferior quality." 

The Doum-pahn (Typhaene thebaica), which might be conso- 
ciated with the Date, yields to the inhabitants of the territories 
adjacent to the Bed Sea, also an edible fruit, and received from 
the taste of its rind the vernacular name Gingerbread-tree. 
Its resin is not without utility, and called the Egyptian 

One of the Lotus plants of the ancients (Zizyphus Lotus, 
which occurs on the edges of the African desert, might like- 
wise be tried for cultivation on our barren north-western plains 
for the sake of its excellent berries, whilst another desert plant, 
the Argan-tree (Argania Sideroxylon), from Morocco, has 
already been introduced through the Liberality of her Majesty's 
Home Government into Australia ; and it is much to be re- 
gretted, that this plant, which once might become of some 
importance to the Murray runs, seems to be of such a tardy 

Not less is the vegetation of the subalpine plains capable of 
improvement. Many of the fruit-shrubs, restricted to the 
moors, heaths, and forests of the colder zones, or to the high 
mountain-regions of warmer countries, might there be reared 
to advantage. 

96 On a General Introduction of 

It is, perhaps, not so easy to obtain for this purpose seeds of 
the various fruit-bushes of the arctic or antarctic countries, or 
from the Himalayan mountains or the Cordilleras ; but the 
settlers, occupying the pastures of the Australian Alps during 
the summer season, might secure for introduction and diffuse 
over our higher mountains many of the wild fruits, which we 
enjoyed in our native countries, such as the northern brambles, 
the Whortleberries including Bilberries (Vaccinium myrtillus), 
the Bleaberry (Vaccinium uliginosum), the Cranberries (Vacci- 
nium Oxycoccus) and similar North American species, such as 
Vaccinium tenellum and V macrocarpum. 

But returning to matters of more immediate advantage, we 
might at least in the warmer parts of the colony, with same 
prospect of success, experiment on the cultivation of the moun- 
tain Rice, which neither requires irrigation nor such a degree 
of heat as requisite for the common rice. Amongst grains I 
may also briefly allude to the Chinese Sugar-grass (Holcus sac- 
charatus), of which the Caflir variety has been lately distributed 
throughout the country by Mr. Archer's assiduity, under a 
desire of adding to the vegetable treasures of the colony. 
This plant can only be regarded for the present as a prolific 
fodder-grass, but the time is, perhaps, not distant, when we 
will profit from any experiments instituted on its yield of sugar, 
and from ascertaining how its saccharine produce is dependent 
on climate and soil. The Indian millet (Holcus Sorghum), 
which is closely allied to the Sugar-grass, is, according to the 
oldest historical documents of the Chinese, if not the most 
antique, at least the first extensively used culture-grain of that 
Empire. The Sorghum must indeed have been praised in the early 
ages of China, when weight and measures of that country were 
framed by the standard of millet grains. Besides the many 
annual varities of this grass, an allied species with perennial 
root, the Haleppo Holcus and the saccharine Pampas Gynerium 
recommend themselves to our notice. Amongst numerous 
fodder-herbs deserves the Italian Clover (Trifolium incarnatum) 
prominently to be adopted at our farms, and no doubt, by the 
dissemination of perennial and nutritious grasses, for instance, 
the European Rye-grass (Lolium perenne), the Timothy-grass 
(Phleum pratense), the Dogtails-grass (Cynosurus cristatus), and 
the common English Meadow-grass (Festuca pratensis), our 
pastures could be greatly enriched. Highly spoken of are like- 
wise two Abyssinean cereal grasses, (Eleusine Tocussa and 
Poa Abyssinica,) and also of the spurious Canada Rice (Zi;zania 

Useful Plajits into Victoria. 97 

It seems unlikely that the Tea-plant ever will advance to 
commercial value in this country, considering the amount of 
manual labour requisite for the preparation of its leaves, a 
process at present not to be achieved sufficently lucrative beyond 
its native country or other densely-populated States, such as the 
North-Western Provinces of India. It is, however, not quite 
improbable, that the plant would be once an acquisition to 
the settlers far in the interior, for obtaining independently their 
own supply of tea, perhaps not so much to save its transit, but 
rather to avoid its uncertainty. 

The plant ranks fully as an ornamental bush, and affords its 
first harvest at the third year of growth. It may be midtiplied 
by seed cuttings or layers, and succeeds best in a loamy soil, but 
according to other writers, also in a slight stony soil. The in- 
troduction of Sugar-cane was lately recommended to the 
colonists. I will not deny that it might be grown here, but it 
remains questionable whether we can grow it to advantage, 
except perhaps on our south-eastern frontiers, and on a few 
other favourable spots. 

The lowest mean temperature ascertained by Humboldt, as 
requisite for its growth (64° F.), exceeds yet by 5 or 6 degrees 
the medium heat hitherto fixed for Port Phillip, whilst a tem- 
perature from 70 — 77° is stated to be necessary for its pro- 
fitable cultivation. The very fact, that North European Cerealia 
are grown advantageously in Victoria, seems to preclude the 
possibility of a lucrative culture of Sugar-cane in this country. 

Adverting to another and not less important part of our 
subject, the introduction on a larger scale of ornamental and 
useful trees, we find a field equally fertile and extensive open 
for our operations. Amongst the endless number of forest- 
trees, which we should desire to call henceforth our own, the 
oaks are entitled prominently to our consideration. 

According to a celebrated Mexican traveller, the late Prof. 
Liebmann, of Copenhagen,* more than 250 species of Oaks, 
chiefly from the northern hemisphere, have been discovered, 
and he points to the remarkable circumstance of their absence 
in Australia and extra-tropical South America, notwithstanding 
the occurrence of beeches hi these parts of the world, with 
which they are often consociated in the north. 

The Sunda Islands possess 37 species of oaks, Japan 20, 
India 21, South Europe 14, but a much larger number than 
this aggregate inhabits North and Central America ; of these 

* America's Ege-vegetation (Copenhagen, 1851), Wallieh in Hooker's Kew 
Miscellany IV. 321. 

98 On a General Introduction of 

80 alone belong to Mexico, all without exception distinct from 
those of the eastern hemisphere. 

Unlike our home oaks, most of these are evergreen, ruled by 
that law of nature, which imparts to the forests of the winter- 
less zones an eternal verdure. How great an acquisition would 
these trees be to this country ! 

Even the oaks of tropical America and of India, will pro- 
bably endure our climate, if reared on moist and sheltered 
localities, most of them being restricted to elevated tracts 
of the country. But these oaks are not alone for their 
handsome forms and (what we are missing so much in Australia) 
for their shade deserving admiration ; but also we may in 
choosing from such a host of species unite beauty with utility. 

Escident fruits are produced by some of the Mediterranean 
Oaks (Quercus Ilex, Q. Ballota, Q. esculenta.) 

An other species (Q. Hindsii), of Upper California, furnishes 
according to Colonel Fremont's narrative the principle vegetable 
winter food to the Indians. 

The American Oak Chesnut (Quercus Prinos) yield acorns 
comparatively of large size and also edible, but the leaves of the 
tree are deciduous. The fruits of any of the species form a 
staple of food for various animals. 

The foliage of the North American Quercus coccinea and 
Quercus rubra assume a magnificent hue of red in autumn. It 
may guide in the cultivation of the American Oak, that accord- 
ing to Professor Liebmann's observations a heavy ferruginous 
clay, free of limestone, prevails in their forests. 

Of the Mexican species probably those wooly leaved kinds 
from higher mountain regions (Quercus spicata, Q. reticulata, 
Q. chrysophylla, Q. pulchella, &c.) are best calculated for this 

We may farther recommend the Willow Oak (Q. Phellos), 
the Live-Oak (Q. virens), and the Grey Oak (Q. cinerea), 
from North America. Quercus Skinneri is remarkable 
for its large acorns, measuring nearly six inches in cir- 
cumferences. Major General Macarthur, with the same 
foresight, which he displayed here in lining some of our public 
roads with Blue-Gumtrees (Eucalyptus globulus) introduced the 
kork oak many years ago into New South Wales, where bearing 
now already fruit it may afford the means of raising extensive 
korktree plantations. The outerbark, which forms the kork, is 
removed from the stem according to circumstances between 
every four and ten years. This operation commences after about 
fifteen years, the tree attaining an age of at least one century. 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 99 

Equal to the Oaks, if not superior to them in importance, are 
the pines. In whatever view we regard them, no other trees 
have greater claims on our attention. Quick growth, graceful 
forms, evergreen foliage, utility of their timber and value of their 
resinous secretions are in most of them admirably united, and in 
some instances the produce even of esculent seeds adds to their 

To the last category belong the beautiful Japanese Ginko 
(Salisburia adiantifolia), Pinus longifolia from Nepaul, Pinus 
Cembra from Siberia, Pinus Lambertiana, Pinus edulis and Pinus 
Fremontiana from North West America, and likewise the Euro- 
pean Stone pine (Pinus pinea). The latter, which abounds in 
Italy is particularly recommendable in our climate. Edible 
kernels are likewise produced by the Moreton Bay and the 
Chili Araucaria (Araucaria BidwiUi and A. imbricata). The 
former (known as the Banya Banya tree) attains not rarely in 
the mountains of subtropical eastern AustraUa, a height of 150 
feet, and must be counted with all its congeners to be the most 
gorgeous productions of the vegetable empire. All thrive well in 
this colony, and whoever has had an opportunity of admiring 
the grandeur of such forests can not sufficiently regret, 
that these noble trees are not more extensively planted in this 

Some of the beautiful Himalayan Pines, such as Pinus Web- 
biana, Pinus Brunoniana, P. longifolia, P. Khutrow, P. Pindrow, 
P. Deodara, the European Silver-fir (Pinus picea), the venerable 
and gigantic Libanon Cedar, the turpentine-yielding Larch 
(Larix Europoea) well adapted for barren and exposed localities, 
and of quick growth, the Norway Spruce (Pinus Abies), the 
pendulous black Larch from North America, the Canadian 
Balsam Pine (Pinus balsamea), although of colder regions, the 
"Weymouth Pine (Pinus Strobus) which attains in North America 
a height of 200, Pinus canadensis, called the Hamlock spruce, 
several of the huge Californian pines, such as Pinus Lambertiana, 
which is satified with the poorest soil, Pinus Douglassii, Pinus 
nobilis, Pinus insignis, the rapidly growing Sequoia sempervirens 
and Wellingtonia gigantea are deserving a place in any larger 
garden. The last mentioned pine is justly celebrated by Pro- 
fessor Lindley as the Monarch of the Californian forests, the 
height of one tree having been ascertained by actual measure- 
ment to be 450 feet with a proportionate diameter of stem ! I 
cannot conclude these remarks on the introduction of coniferous 
trees without alluding to the broad-leaved Chinese Pine (Cun- 
inghamia lanceolata), to the Japan Cedar (Cryptomeria japonica), 

100 On a General Introduction of 

to the splendid oriental Pinns Nordmanniana of unusual celerity 
of growth, to the Californian Cupressus macrocarpa, to Pinus 
cephalonica from Mount Enos, which greatly resembles an 
Araucaria, attaining a considerable height, and finally to the 
straight stemmed Kaurie-pines, or Dammaras, which are repre- 
sented by a magnificent species on the East coast of Australia 
and others in New Zealand, East India and the Pacific Islands, 
exquisitely adapted for avenue. Taxodium distichum (the North 
American Swamp Cypress) is well qualified for surrounding the 
margins of lagoons. 

Mr. Hyndman, of this city, who possesses great experience in 
forming public plantations, has favoured me with a list of pines 
practically known to him as recommendable for a general intro- 
duction, and I have gladly appended his enumeration at the end 
of this paper. 

For further information on the different trees alluded to on this 
occasion, I beg to refer to the valuable and everywhere accessible 
works of Loudon. 

In the selection of trees for avenue, evergreen kinds should, in 
a winterless country, like ours, receive preference to deciduous 
ones. New Zealand and the whole East coast of this continent 
abound in splendid umbrageous forest-trees, for us most 
easily obtainable. The Eucalypti, which are utterly wanting 
in New Zealand exhibit in the coast tract of Eastern Australia 
less of their otherwise vast prevalence in this continent, being 
replaced by a great variety of trees with horizontal leaves, which 
impart to their forests an appearance strikingly different to the 
effect produced by the generally pendulous foliage of the Euca- 
lyptus. In these woods our attention would be attracted by many 
trees highly acceptable for shading our public promenades : for 
instance several arborescent species of Grevillea (G. robusta, G. 
Hillii, &c), the red Cedar (Cedrela Australis), several large 
figtrees with leathery shining leaves, some beautiful sapindaceous, 
meliaceous and myrtaceous trees, and arborent species of capparis, 
Elaeocarpus, Alphitonia, Mappa, and other genera. The flame-tree 
of Illawarra (Brachychiton acerifolium) of mapple-like habit and 
adorned with brilliant blossoms can for the above purpose hardly 
be surpassed, if planted on rich soil, unless great rapidity of growth 
should be required. A variety of foreign Lauri might be associated 
with the former, such as the evergreen species from North America 
(Lauras Borbonia and L. Carolinensis) from the Canary Islands, 
(L. Canariensis, foetens and Indica,) and the Champhor-tree from 
Japan, and also the noble Lophostemon, Acmena, and our black- 
wood Acacia (A. melanoxylon). Still, as a quick growing tree, the 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 101 

native Blue Gum (Eucalyptus globulus) remains hitherto un- 

But in preference to an immense array of merely ornamental 
trees desirable for this country, we shall at this opportunity 
review rather some of those plants, which would enrich our 
orchards or our economic fields. The European and the smaller 
North American Chesnut-trees (Castanea vesca and pumila), the 
different Walnut-trees, including the Pekan-nut of North 
America (juglans oliviformis) and the black Walnut, and the 
shell bark Hickory (Carya alba) of the same country, claim, 
notwithstanding their deciduous foliage, our advertance. From 
the borders of the Mediterranean Sea should be transplanted 
to us the Manna Ash (Ornus rotundifolia), the Liquorice-plants 
(Glycyrhiza glabra and G. echinata), the Pistacia-tree, with its 
almond-like fruit (Pistacia vera), the Mastix-tree (Pistacia Len- 
tiscus), and the Turpentine Pistacia (P. Terebinthus). China 
might provide us with the Wampee (Cookia punctata), with the 
Kum Quat (Citrus japonica), and with an another small fruit of 
the Orange-tribe (Glycosmis citrifolia, also with the eatable 
berries of Hovenia dulcis, some of the edible Eugenias and 
jambosas, particularly the Malay Apple-tree (E. Malaccensis), 
which in all probability will prove hardy in Victoria, further 
with its indigenous Quince (Cydonica Chinensis), the date-like 
Kaki (Diospyros kaki) yielded by a fine evergreen tree, with the 
Jujub, Litchi, and Logan fruit, (zizyphus jujuba, Dimocarpus, 
Logan et Lichi), of which, the latter two are exported to Europe, 
and the produce of ornamental sapindaceous trees. It remains 
to be ascertained, whether not of the different Custard-apples, 
the Peruvian Cherimoyer (Anona Cherimolia) will show itself 
hardy in our climate. 

The Eugenia Ugni, from Peru, lately introduced to Europe, 
has been praised for its delicious fruit, and some of the oxotic 
Berberries are recommended on similar grounds. We may add 
yet the North American and South European Date-plum 
(Diospyros Virginiana and Diospyros Lotus). 

How far the Mate or Paraguay tea, furnished by a kind of 
holly (Ilex Paraguensis) will succeed under cultivation in this 
country, and whether this beverage will meet with the appro- 
bation of the colonists is yet to be ascertained. 

The Corob-tree (Ceratonia Siliqua), yielding an edible pod, 
known as St. John's Bread, forms a most eligible and useful 
plant for shrubberies, and the same may be said of the Straw- 
berry-tree of South Europe (Arbutus Unedo) a lovely bush with 

102 On a General Introduction of 

eatable fruits. On the island of the Lake of Killarny, it 
forms, according to Mr. Hyndman, as magnificent a tree as can 
be beheld. Its wood is much esteemed for ornamental work. 
The lovely Arbutus canariensis and A. Andrachne ought to 
obtain their place. 

I fear it would be premature to recommend the cultivation of 
dye-plants under the present circumstances of the colony, as 
probably foreign markets will supply us for a long time yet 
with articles of dye at a less expensive rate than at which they 
could be produced in Australia. Still we might diffuse such 
plants as the Chinese Indigo (Isatis indigotica), the common 
Woad (Isatis tinctoria), the Saffron (Crocus sativus), the Car- 
thamus and the Madder (Eubia tinctorum), of which the latter 
many years ago became introduced and cultivated by Mr. Edw. 
Wilson of this city. 

Many of the colonists may be desirous to surround them- 
selves with some of those plants, which, although devoid of practical 
importance to us, are of the greatest value to their respective 
native countries, such as the Varnish-tree (Elaeococca vernicia) 
from the seed-oil of which the Chinese Varnish is prepared, the 
Grass-cloth plant (Boeheria nivea), the Eice-paper plant (Panax 
papyrifer), the Tallow-trees (Stillingia sebifera and the Litsaea 
Chinesis), all from the Chinese Empire, and which, consequently 
will nourish without protection, at least in the warmer parts of 
our colony. 

The general distribution of the Chinese yam, Dioscorea Batatas), 
which found its way recently into this country, remains desira- 
ble : the Spanish Scorzonera, the sweet potato (Convolvulus 
Batatas) and the Jerusalem Artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus) 
ought to be its companions ; the leaves of the latter being even 
useful. The cultivation of Arum Colocasia, well-known for its 
edible tubers, extends now from Portugal to China, and the plant 
is therefore well-deserving of our notice. 

Through Dr. Embling, who always evinced such a lively inte- 
rest for adding to our stores of the animal and vegetable king- 
doms, seeds of the Cotton-plant have been placed at my disposal. 
I gladly invite the colonists, chiefly those residing in the 
milder parts of the country, to subject the plant to a 
fair trial, even if it were only to establish the fact, that it endures 
the vicissitudes of our temperature without being impaired in 
its productiveness. Enterprise of future days may avail itself of 
the experience gained at present. Most cultivators of cotton 
recommend for its growth light fertile soil, of slight humidity. 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 103 

Porter even observes that it may be cultivated on soil of so 
moderate fertility that it woidd often be difficult to procure from 
it any other harvest .* 

A double interest attaches itself to the culture of the various 
kinds of Rhubarb, their roots being of medicinal value, and their 
leafstalks offering an wholesome acidulous vegetable. If culti- 
vated for its root, dry shady mountain localities ought to be 
chosen. One species (Rheum nobile) lately discovered in the 
Indian Highlands belongs to the grandest objects of vegetation 

The Chinese esteem as potherbs — Cacalia procumbens, Ama- 
ranthus polygamus, the sweet root (Simn Sisarum), and Aralia 
edulis, the root of the latter also serving as salad ; and a kind 
of Cabbage peculiar to that country (Brassica Chinensis) re- 
mained also yet a desideratum of our gardens. 

The Okro and the red Sorrel of West India (being the fruit 
of Hibiscus esculentus and Hibiscus Sabdariffa) are to be 
regarded as culinary acquisitions. 

The cultivation of medicinal plants did not receive hitherto 
the attention which it justly deserves. It is intended to retain 
a portion of our Botanic Garden for the cidtiire of those officinal 
herbs, of which the seeds will be acceptable to the gardens of 
country practitioners. 

Some of the Cinchonas, or Peruvian bark trees, occur on the 
slopes of the Andes, under a mean temperature little exceeding 
that of Port Phillip, and are even ascending to an elevation of 
10,000 feet, and their introduction to favourable humid spots 
in this colony will therefore probably not be attended with great 

South Europe and the Orient furnish in some sorts of Astra- 
galus — the Gum Tragacanth (Astragalus Creticus, A. verus, A 
gummifer). These plants should be secured, being of beauty, of 
iitility, and of easy cultivation, the officinal Senna-Cassias of 
Arab, and the handsome Aloe plants of South Africa might well 
be associated with them. 

The preparation of Arrow-root, Tobacco, and of Opium is 
probably reserved for later days of the colony. The Manihot, 
or South American farina (Jatropha Manihot), is cultivated 
somewhat beyond the tropics. It is, therefore, well deserving a 
place in our experimental gardens, particularly with the weight 
of a recommendation, according to which the produce of the 
Manihot exceeds sixfold that of wheat. 

* G. R. Porter's "Tropical Agriculturist," p. 9. 

104 On a General Introduction of 

Camellia Sasanqua and oleifera can be considered as the Oil 
trees of the Chinese. Being elegant plants, content with a 
climate which ripens the grape and with a meagre soil, and 
yielding tea, they seem to be eminently calculated for a profitable 

The white Mulberry is employed in South Europe much in 
the manner of the British pollard elm, and is, with good right, 
recommended for field hedges -or garden walls in the colony. 
Probably, in later days, the production of indigenous silk will 
become remunerative, and we might already act, preparatory to 
this branch of industry, in adopting, even regardless of its fruit, 
the white Mulberry for the needful enclosures of cultivated 
ground. The red and white Mulberry-trees produce, whilst young, 
generally only flowers — a circumstance which may have dis- 
heartened many in their cultivation ; but the fruitfulness of 
these trees increases with advancing age. The most nutritious 
variety for the silkworm is the Lee Mulberry (Morus intermedia). 
I ought finally to suggest that no efforts should be spared to 
acquire those gorgeous water-plants, which not only tradition, 
and historical monuments of the remotest antiquity, have pointed 
out as sacred in the dark ages of the past, and as a tribute of 
mythical veneration, but in which also the enlightened 
genius of the present age recognised the emblems of majesty. 

The Nelumbo, or sacred Pythagorean Bean (Nehunbium spe- 
ciosum), will be probably easily naturalised, particularly when 
already Sir George Stounton informs us of its occurrence in the 
north of China. 

The equally useful and grand Nelumbium luteum of North 
America exists, according to Mr. Hyndman's information, even 
in Lake Erie, within the isothermal zone of England. 

It seems that the roots, protected by the unfreezing depth of 
the water, retain vitality, and thus send annually forth their leaves 
and lovely blossoms. 

The endeavours of transplanting the incomparable Waterlily, 
of the Amazon River, and other waters of Central America 
(Victoria Regia) to our lakes and lagoons may less likely be 
crowned with success. 

Since, however, this brilliant plant has been flowering at 
Mauritius, no difficulty can arise in securing it, with many other 
tropical water plants, at least, for the warmer parts of Eastern 

Far from having exhausted my material, I conclude these re- 
marks for the present, and venture to hope that I shall not in 
vain appeal to those colonists who have had an opportunity of 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 105 

visiting, besides Australia, other extra-European countries, to 
favour us with their observations on culture plants, of which 
every country has its own, and many yet eligible for us. . Thus any 
friends of progress might amply enrich our fields. I did not 
attempt to enumerate even the principal plants which would 
enhance the beauty of our gardens. But, in the warmer parts 
of the country, the Bamboo and the Nile-papyrus ought to bine 
the water-courses. Nor should in vain the charming Rhodo- 
dendrons, the Kalmias, Liriodendrons, the palm-like Ence- 
phalarti, the magnificent Luculias, Magnolias, Photinias, and an 
endless number of equally beautiful shrubs solicit in our gardens 
for a place. Nor can I suppress a hope of seeing the fanciful 
varieties produced by horticulture recede before the simple 
grandeur of Nature itself, and seeing in the choice of foreign 
plants for introduction, variety and beauty combined with 
utility, and views adapted in our own permanent selection from 
the floral treasures of the world, of which a future generation 
will approve. 

Useful and Ornamental Pines recommended by Mr. Hyndman 
for introduction. 

Libocedrus tetragona, a beautiful tree, introduced by Mr. 
Lobb from the Andes of Patagonia, attains a height from eighty 
to a hundred feet. It grows very fast ; timber good. 

Cupressus torulosa. — It is said, by those who have seen it 
growing on the Himalayas, to rival almost the noble Deodar 
Cedar, in size and beauty. By Major Chadden, a very clever 
English botanist, who has spent a number of years in India, I 
have been told that its timber equals that of the Deodar. 

Cupressus Uhdeana. — This species differs in appearance 
materially from all the other kinds of Cypress, and it grows 
with extraordinary rapidity. It is a beautiful tree, and a native 
of Mexico. 

Cupressus majestica. — It has a noble habit, grows quick, and 
is of easy culture. 

Cupressus macrocarpa (Large-fruited Californian Cypress). — 
This is a very beautiful species, with horizontal branches, and 
bright green foliage. It grows very rapid, and attains a height 
of 100 or 150 feet, and 9 feet in circumference. Mr. Hartweg, 
the introducer of this species, says, " It resembles the Cedar of 
Lebanon it its style of growth." The timber is good. 

Chamcecyparis sphwroidea (the white Cedar of New England) 
is a beautiful tree, grows in swampy places, attains a height of 

106 On a General Introduction of 

eighty or ninety feet. The timber is light, soft, fine grained, and 
easily worked ; it resists the alternation of dryness and moisture 
longer than the wood of any other tree growing in America. 

Taxodium distichum (Bald Cypress). — This is a beautiful 
tree. In its native country (Florida) it grows to about 150 feet 
high, and from 90 to 100 feet in circumference ; the timber is 
good, but soft. There is a specimen of this in Chatsworth 80 
feet high. 

Pinus mitis. — This tree furnishes the Yellow Pine of Com- 
merce. It has long slender leaves and large cones : it is a very 
handsome tree. The young shoots are covered with a velvet- 
coloured bloom. It grows on the poorest soils of America ; 
grows quick. 

Pinus Fremontiana. — -This is a handsome dwarf-growing 
Pine, and is well worth cultivation, as its seeds are very nutri- 
tious and pleasant flavoured, having the taste of Almonds, and 
the cones are produced in great abundance. It grows on the 
Sierra Nevada, or great Californian mountains. 

Pinus ponderosa, a very remarkable species, and very orna- 
mental. The buds are large, pointed, and free from resin. 
The branches are horizontal at first, but generally drooping at 
the extremity. 

Pinus Benthamiana, a noble species. It sometimes attains 
the height of 200 feet, with a stem 28 feet in circumference ; it 
grows very quick, and the timber is very valuable. It grows on 
the mountains of Santa Cruz in California. 

Pinus Australis (Syn. P. palustris) has leaves as long as P. 
longifolia, but of a beautiful brilliant green ; and it has the 
advantage, not only of being a very ornamental tree, but of pro- 
ducing better wood than almost any other kinds of North 
American Pine, the wood being durable, fine-grained, and sus- 
ceptible of a very high polish. It has also the recommendation 
of growing well near the sea, where there is only a thin stratum 
of mould covering the sand. Its wood is that known in com- 
merce as the red Pine. 

Pinus insignis. — This Pine has been well named, its general 
appearance being indeed remarkable, and quite different from 
that of every other species yet introduced. It is a tree of great 
beauty, with leaves of a rich grass green colour, and grows with 
great rapidity ; the wood also is good. 

Pinus radiata. — This species is very nearly allied to P. 
insignis, but the cones are nearly three times as large. It was 
found growing almost close to the sea beach in California, 
attaining a height of 100 feet, with a straight stem feathered 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 107 

down to the ground with branches. It is said to afford excellent 
timber, which is very tough, and admirably adapted for boat- 
building : it is also well adapted for planting near the sea coast. 
The leaves are of a dark green, and very slender. 

P. macrocarpa. — The leaves of this species are from ten to 
fourteen inches long. The trees are of tapering form and regidar 
growth, attaining a height of 150 feet ; the timber is good. The 
cones are furnished with hooks three or four inches in length, 
and very strong. The leaves are of a beautiful glaucous hue. 

Pinus Sabiniana. — Is very like P. macrocarpa, but the cones 
are not hooked ; they are prickly, hence the names of Prickly- 
coned Pine and great hooked Pine. Both are from California. 

P. Montezumae, a very handsome tall tree, with rather long 
leaves and large cones. The timber is said to be good : it grows 
to sixty feet high. It is from Mexico, near Ajusca. 

Pinus macrophylla, remarkable for its very long leaves, 
which are nearly twenty inches long ; the timber is good, but 
the plant is rather rare yet. It is a native of Mexico, on the 

Pinus Orenvillea. — This Pine is also remarkable for its long- 
leaves and large cones, which are sometimes sixteen inches long. 
The natives call it " Ocote macho, or the Male Pine," on account 
of its robust habit of growth and noble appearance. It grows 
from 80 to 100 feet high ; the timber is said to be good. 
It grows on the Terra de San Juan (or Saddle Mountain), in 

P. cembra, a beautiful pine. It grows rapidly, with a straight 
trunk, and smooth bark. The wood is soft, but has very fine 
grain, and it is very much used by the shepherds of Switzerland 
and the Tyrol for carving those curious little figures of men and 
animals which are known all over Europe. The seeds produce 
oil abundantly, and the shells of the kernels yield a fine red 

Pinus excelsa. — This is an Indian pine, which the natives call 
ihe King of the Fir Tribe. It grows to 100 feet high, and is 
remarkable for its drooping branches, from which peculiarity it 
has been called by travellers in the Himalayas the " Weeping 
Pine." It yields a great quantity of turpentine, and its 
timber is excellent. There are very fine trees of this species in 

Gedrus deodara. — Is found on the Himalayas, at an elevation 
of from 7,000 to 12,000 feet. It is decidedly the most orna- 
mental coniferous tree ever introduced, and, from its great 
beauty, rapid growth, perfect hardiness, and valuable timber, it 

108 On a General Introduction of 

is exceedingly well suited for being extensively planted in parks 
and pleasure-grounds. Dr. Falconer gives the dimensions of a 
fallen Deodar, which he saw on the Himalayas, as 36 feet in 
circumference at the base, and 130 feet in length. The same 
authority states that timber of the Deodar, taken from a temple, 
supposed to have existed at least 1000 years, was, to all appear- 
ance, as sound as when first placed there, not affording a dwelling 
even to a solitary insect. " The wood of the Deodar," Mr. 
Loudon has remarked in his Arboratum Britannicwm, " has a 
remarkably fine close grain, capable of receiving a very high 
polish — so much so, indeed, that a table formed of the section of 
the section of a trunk four feet in diameter, sent by Dr. Wallich 
to the late Mr. Lambert, has been compared to a slab of brown 
agate ! But, unfortunately, all the plants of this tree, grown 
in this colony, are from layers ; and none of the coniferse ever 
make good plants, unless grown from seed, except the Cypress, 
which may be advantageously increased by cuttings. 

Araucaria imbricata is decidedly the most remarkable 
species of the genus. It has a very singular appearance ; the 
trunk is quite straight ; its bark is thick, and in old trees corky. 
The wood is also not only very strong and good, but it is full of 
beautiful veins, and is capable of being polished and worked 
with the greatest facility. The seeds, which resemble that of an 
almond, but is double the size, is reckoned wholesome food; 
when roasted they taste something like chestnuts. There are 
some plants of this to be seen in England 40 feet high. It grows 
to 150 feet in Chili. 

Araucaria brasiliana is a very handsome tree, but is much 
more tender than A. imbricata. 

Sequoia sempervirens. — The Bastard Cedar was first dis- 
covered by Mr. Menzies in 1796, and was seen growing by my 
late lamented friend, Dr. Coulter, about 40 years afterwards, but 
it was not introduced to England until 1843, when plants of it 
were sent to London by Dr. Fischer, of St. Petersburgh. One 
of the trees seen by Dr. Coulter measured 270 feet in height, 
and 55 feet in circumference, at 6 feet from the ground. This 
tree is called by the American settlers " The Giant of the 
Forest." The wood is beautifully red, fine, and close grained : 
it grows very quick 

Podocarpus chilina. — This tree is called in Chili, Maniqui. 
It is a beautiful tree, producing excellent timber ; it grows to 50 
or 60 feet high. 

Torreya taxifolia is a tree from 40 to 50 feet high, which 
has a very disagreeable smell when burnt. The wood, though 

Useful Plants into Victoria. 109 

of small dimensions, is very durable, and not liable to the attacks 
of insects. It is a very pretty tree. In Japan an oil is made 
from the kernel of the nut of T. nucifera, and used for culinary 
purposes. It is a very handsome tree. 

Art. XIV. — On Railway Gradients. By William Austen 
Zeal, Esq., C.E., Melbourne. 

[Read before the Institute, 2nd September, 1857.] 

Mr. President and Gentlemen, — The discussion of a sub- 
ject of so much importance to every colonist in Victoria, 
cannot be considered at a more opportune time than the present ; 
and, no Institute in this province, can with greater advantage 
to the public express its opinion at this particular crisis, than 
this Society can now do. 

Impressed with this idea, I have written this paper, being 
convinced no undertaking will have more influence on the future 
well-being of this great country, than the extension of Eailways 
throughout its length and breadth. This I conceive to be a suffi- 
cient incentive for my claiming for it all the publicity so 
important a question demands. 

Victoria, in fact the whole Australian continent, must rely 
upon, and find in Eailways the one great means by which the 
interior will be rendered available for colonization. Denied the 
advantage of water carriage, like that possessed by all other 
countries, an artificial mode of intercommunication must be 
resorted to, and the Eailroad will be called upon to undertake 
the united duties of Eoad and Eiver ; and from all former expe- 
rience no better agency can be employed, no more expeditious 
mode of transit could here be initiated, than that offered by the 
Eailway system. 

It is well-known when Eailways were first introduced in 
Britain, the observance of this fundamental law was rigorously 
enforced ; — that the surface of the Eails should form as 
nearly as practicable a horizontal line and for a lengthened 
period it was deemed impossible to ascend an incline by locomo- 
tive power, except under the most favourable circumstances. 

Corroborative of this fact, is an instance patent to all con- 
versant with Eailway History ; viz. : the virulent opposition the 
English South Western Company experienced at the hands of the 

110 On Railway Gradients. 

Great Western proprietary and opposing Landowners of the 
District, on account of the introduction of inclines scarcely per- 
ceptible to the eye. So formidable a character did the oppo- 
sition assume, that Dr. Lardner was commissioned by the first- 
named Company, to undertake a series of the most elaborate 
experiments on the economical working of Railway Gradients. 
Much time and research were expended in investigating a subject 
ridiculed by opposing partizans ; and, in reviewing the subject 
it is interesting to observe the bias and prejudice that interested 
motives will lend to questions demanding the utmost calmness 
and deliberation in discussion. The inclines, about which so 
great a controversy arose, were those of 1 in 250. Dr. Lardner, 
in carrying on his experiments, proved, that in the working of a 
Train, the velocity acquired by Gravity alone in descent, was a 
compensating feature in favour of grades, producing a result 
nearly equivalent in value to the increased power incurred in 
performing an ascent of equal ratio : recent experience has 
established this an axiom. 

Tracing the growth of Railways, and their gradual extension 
into remote mountainous districts, it is pleasing to note how 
readily the Locomotive adapted itself to circumstances ; 
how the opponents of severe inclines modified their views, and 
became the foremost in the van of improvement. 

As an example of level lines in England, the London and 
North-Western, and Great Western, stand pre-eminent. On the 
latter it has been frequently remarked that the cuttings are so 
level they are with difficulty drained. 

In the United Kingdom, as a general rule, Gradients of a 
very favourable character prevail, and only in exceptional cases 
the reverse is the case. 

In the United States of America there are Railways upon 
which inclines of unprecedented severity have been introduced : 
and American Engineers have in these cases, with national 
energy, outstript all previous experience. I shall presently 
quote the cases to which allusion is made ; before doing so, 
however, I would observe that, as a rule, Gradients on American 
lines are of a favourable character. 

On the continent of Europe some interesting innovations of 
Railway experience have been made ; long steep Gradients have 
been adopted with entire success. Such are found to be capable 
of economical working, with heavy goods trains, and this, too, 
combined with speed ; results highly encouraging to the Engineer 
in countries possessing physical difficidties. 

The particulars of these, and other successes of engineering 

On Railway Gradients. Ill 

skill and enterprise, I shall notice, and produce data to prove 
that in Victoria the difficulties the engineer has to encounter 
have been far surpassed in Europe and America ; and, I will 
endeavour to show that we have everything to hope for, and 
nothing to fear, in the extension of Railways over the entire 
surface of this province. 

Gradients are practically injurious and detrimental to the 
efficient working of a Eailway, when they involve such an 
increase of power as to render it necessary to resort to the 
heaviest engines — most substantial permanent Way and Works — 
greatly reduced rate of speed with increased risk and loss of 
time to the passenger. 

A very severe descent may be accomplished with speed and 
safety, if the direction of the Eailway be in a straight line ; but, 
if combined with curves of small radii, as is often the case, the 
utmost eaution is necessary to prevent the engine leaving the 
rails. I am fully aware that the limit of grades and curves is a 
debateable point with engineers, and shall therefore confine 
myself to laying before you an epitome of British and Foreign 
Gradients, and describe the result of my own experience, com- 
mencing with a brief description of British lines. 

The Railways of the United Kingdom are singularly free 
from abrupt inclines, no expense having been spared in their 
construction ; consequently, they are capable of being worked at 
high speeds, and with little excess of power beyond what a 
perfectly level Hue would require. The economy of this is 
questionable : for if on a line of 100 miles it can be proved 
that by the introduction of more severe inclines, both time and 
money can be saved, I think it will be generally conceded that 
the economical method is preferable. 

The question hence arises, what shall be the limit to inclines ? 
This must be governed by the physical contour of the country. 
I should not hesitate, however, to introduce a severe gradient 
where necessity required it, in preference to following a more 
circuitous route, for, taking the increased length of Hue into con- 
sideration, the extra length of road to lay down, and keep in 
repair, it will be found far cheaper and preferable to introduce 
a gradient of (say), 1 in 50, over a distance of two miles than to 
extend a Railway over three times that length for the purpose of 
obtaining a gradient of 1 in 150. 

The opponents of severe inclines urge, and with some apparent 
truth, that the increased weight of the engine, competent to work 
a severe gradient, (say) 1 in 50 ; so destroys the road as to render 
it necessary to relay the same, and at intervals renew it with 

112 On Railway Gradients. 

frequent repairs. If it were imperative upon Railway Companies 
to have these heavy engines, I fully admit there would be every 
reason in such argument : but when daily experience entirely 
controverts this fallacy, little weight should be attached to it 
The fact is patent to all who have thoroughly investigated the 
question, that the rails on severe inclines, are but little more 
subject to wear and tear than those on the most modern ascents. 

On a gradient of 1 in 50, two engines of 25 tons* and 29 
tons* respectively, will draw as heavy a load as a single engine 
of 54 tons.* They can be so constructed that one driver and 
stoker can attend to both and have also this great advantage over 
a single engine, that the weight of 54 tons* can be diffused over 
twice as many wheels as the 54 ton* engine can possibly have. 
In case of accident likewise, two engines are far safer ; one engine 
being sufficient to control the train, should it be necessary from 
accident, to return to the starting place. 

On the Birmingham and Gloucester Railway ; — the Lickey 
incline, — a gradient of 1 in 37 ; two engines weighing respectively 
35 and 32 tons, or together 67 tons, took up with ease a load of 
240 tons at a speed of nearly 7 miles per hour ; and on the 
Turin and Genoa Railway two engines of 25 tons, or together 50 
tons, took a load of 100 tons, or inclusive of engines 150 tons, up 
an incline of 1 in 36 for 6 miles at a uniform speed of 15 miles 
per hour. 

In addition to instances bearing so directly on the economical 
working of heavy grades, I am enabled to add the results of 
experiments, undertaken on behalf of the East Lancashire Rail- 
way Company by Mr. Perring. 

The Accrington Incline is 2 miles in length, composed of the 
following heavy gradients : — 

1 in 40 1.125 

lin38 60 

1 in 47 275 

2. miles. 

The Report states the experiments were conducted with great 
care, and extended over a period of three months during the most 
inclement season of the year. 

As it would take much too lengthened a time to analyse each 

* Inclusive of tender. 

On Railway Gradients. 


result, I shall give a summary, deduced from experiments made 
by a single engine, and by a leading and assisting engine, 
combined : — 



Single Engine. 

Two Engines. 

No. of 

Mean Load 
in Tons. 

Miles pr hour. 

No. of 

Mean Load 
in Tons. 

Miles pr hour. 







The weight of the heaviest engine used was 26.25 tons, 
tender 16.75 tons, 18 inches cylinder, two feet stroke, six five 
feet wheels, all coupled. 


Single Engine. 

Two Engines. 

No. of 

Mean Load 
in Tons. 

Speed in 
Miles pr hour. 

No. of 

Mean Load 
in Tons. 

Speed in 
Miles pr hour. 







The heaviest leading engine used weighed 18.5 tons ; tender, 
12.5 tons ; 15 inches cylinder ; 1 ft. 8 inches stroke ; 6.5-feet 
6 inch wheels, four coupled 

The average weight of the assisting engine was 21.5 tons. 

The conclusions deducible from these experiments are, that, 
where heavy trains have to be moved at low speeds, two engines 
will perform a duty equal to that undertaken by one engine 
with half the load ; but in the case of passenger trains, where 
the power of one engine is equal to the efficient propulsion of 
the train at a speed of (say) 20 miles per hour, the use of two 
engines is rather disadvantageous than otherwise. 

This is conclusive evidence that the working of severe Gra- 
dients has frequently been but imperfectly considered. The 
following severe Gradients on British, European, and American 


On Railway Gradients. 

lines are daily worked. The results may be relied on, great care 
having been taken to ensure accuracy : — 


of Grade 





Weight of 




pr hr. 





Virginian Central . 
Oldham Incline 
Turin and Genoa ) 
Giovi Incline . \ 











2 i 50 1 engs 




Lickey Incline 





2 1 67 I engs 



Accrington Incline . 


1 in 41J 






Central .... 

Semmering Incline . 

Durham and Sun- 
derland . . . 

South Devon . . . 















B signifies "British 


V. "American." 



This Table is compiled from Parliamentary Papers ; the 
Transactions of the Institute of Civil Engineers ; and, Memoranda 
gleaned by myself. The results unquestionably prove that a 
Gradient of 1 in 50 may be worked with an engine of 27 tons, 
and carrying a passenger train of 70 to 80 tons, at the rate of 
15 to 20 miles per hour, and this with perfect ease. Assuming 
these data as a guide, it is evident that it is not only practicable, 
but it is in every way preferable, to have Gradients of 1 in 50 to 1 
in 60, than to follow a circuitous, and most frequently an equally 
expensive route, for the purpose of obtaining an incline of 1 in 
100 to 1 in 150. 

Under peculiar circumstances, it would doubtless be advisable 
to lengthen grades, where, in ascending table land, the surface 
of the country on either side of the proposed Railway is tolerably 
uniform ; but, in the majority of cases in which I have been 
engaged, the longer line would have been infinitely the most 
expensive one, on account of the table land being traversed by 
deep ravines, gullies, and creeks — imposing a large outlay in the 
item of Bridges, Culverts, &c. 

In the working of inclines, the natural forces to be overcome, 
viz., Atmospheric resistance, friction, and resistance due to 
gravity, are constants pretty accurately known ; hence, the 
Engineer in estimating the required power of his engines, does 
so on calculations proved by experience. 

On Railway Gradients. 115 

Atmospheric resistance, increasing with the square of the 
the velocity of the moving body, assumes a power on a carriage 
moving at a speed of one hundred miles per hour, equal to 
that expended in overcoming the inertia of 180 tons on a level. 
It is to be regretted, this subject has not received, at the hands 
of engineers, that amount of consideration its importance 

Mr. H. Bessemer gives an account of a series of experiments 
on the opposing power of the atmosphere. The conclusion he 
arrived at was, that the resistance of the atmosphere equalled on the 
leading carriage of a train, a power of 10 to 4, as contrasted 
with the resistance offered individually by each trailing carriage. 
Continuing these experiments he states — this latter force was 
completely neutralised by filling in the spaces between the 
ends of each carriage with hoods, making the train in appear- 
ance one long carriage. 

This report is singularly at variance with the statements of 
Mr. Wood, published by the British Association. There it is 
stated, " the form of the front/' (i.e.) the leading carriage of a 
train " has no observable effect, and that whether the engine 
and tender be in front or two carriages of equal weight, the 
resistance will be the same." 

It is further shown, that " converting the train into one un- 
broken mass," by filling in the spaces between each carriage, as 
adopted by Mr. Bessemer, was a " disadvantage" rather than 
otherwise, and Mr. Wood concludes, "it is certain that no additional 
resistance is occasioned by leaving open spaces between the 

How such conflicting accounts can be reconciled, is a question 
I will not discuss. Possibly Mr. Wood's experiments were 
made on a comparatively calm day, with the motion of the air 
uniformly with that of the train. 

I am inclined to think, that with a head wind, however slight, 
the theory of Mr. Bessemer is the most accurate one, though, 
doubtless, the results quoted are much exaggerated. 

According to the Chevalier de Pambour, the resistance of the 
atmosphere to the passage of a train may be found thus : — 

V= Velocity of moving body, V 2 X • 002688= Atmospheric 
resistance in lbs. avordupois per square foot. 

On a level well laid line of railway, Friction retards motion 
to the extent of 61bs. per ton for carriages. This may be 
assumed as a constant. 

The resistance due to Gravity, when the line of traction is parallel 
to the incline, increases in uniformity with the grade, and equals, 

116 On Railway Gradients. 

in an incline of 1 in 50, 44.8 lbs. per ton ; hence, the surplus 
of traction in a train of 150 tons, ascending an incline of 1 in 
50, on account of grade, is 6720 lbs., or equivalent to the force 
an engine requires to exert in moving 840 tons on a level. 

It would be but travelling over ground, thoroughly investi- 
gated, to enter fully into the question, of resistances Peculia- 
rities of climate and temperature occur in every habitable 
portion of the globe. In England, the frosts, fogs, and mist, 
are very detrimental to the expeditious ascent of inclines, and 
involve a serious loss of power on the average working of 

In Victoria, I do not anticipate from these causes, any material 
loss, the climate is more genial, clear, and dry ; in summer 
the heat of the furious Sirocco from its rarifying qualities, will 
assist, rather than retard the engine, in climbing the steep 
sudden ascents peculiar to this country. 

The full solution of the subject of gradients involves the 
consideration of the question: — what incline gives practical 
assistance to a descending Train ? 

The angle of Eepose has been assumed by various autho- 
rities of inclinations, varying from 1 in 280 to 1 in 380 ; the 
latter is an American standard. 

This is a question of great mathematical interest, and would 
require too much time to enter upon fully. I am, however, 
inclined from continued observation, to think the angle of 
repose should be more acute than either of these inclines. It 
is true, in practice, it cannot be supposed that any machine or 
moving body can be made so perfect in form and finish, that it 
will from a state of rest, move by force of gravity on an incline 
more acute than 1 in 280, and run downwards with accelerated 
velocity ; still, I have no hesitation in affirming, that the time 
will come when the practice and theory of this subject will 
much more closely assimilate than they now do. 

The Irish Railway Commissioners assumed, that a descending 
grade of 1 in 140, imparted an impetus to a train, of practical 
value, but with a greater incline no advantage was gained as 
regards speed. From my own experience, I am led to infer, 
that this standard is far too high, and should be about 1 in 100. 

The compensating power of descending planes, is an element 
in their favour of the greatest importance, it being found that 
the cost of the additional power required of an engine in 
ascent, is nearly counterbalanced by an equivalent obtained in 
descent, where a greater speed at a reduced cost is a natural 

On Railway Gradients. 117 

I need but refer to home authorities confirmatory of this 
assertion, and point to what Engineers, formerly adopting the 
" level theory," have in later years done. 

Mr. Brunei, in a report to the Great Western Directors, 
dated December, 1838, strenuously advocates "the great 
superiority of a line " approaching the level," and further states, 
" On gradients of 16 feet per mile, the engine during half the 
time is barely doing more than driving itself." In 1850, we 
find him adopting gradients of eighty-jive and one hundred 
feet per mile with entire success. 

Regarding the expense of working inclines, Mr. Vignoles, in 
a paper read in 1840, before the members of the British 
Association, states, " he had analysed railway expenses of 
working, and reduced them to a mileage, &c, as deduced from 
several years experience &c, under different circumstances, and 
with greatly different gradients ;" and he adds, the result of 
" this average seemed to hold good irrespective of gradients or 

Dr. Lardner gives an elaborate analysis of the working of 
railway gradients : the result is so well known, I shall but allude 
to it. He asserts that " a compensating effect is produced in 
descending and ascending gradients, and that a variation of 
speed in the train is the whole amount of inconvenience that 
will ensue ; that the time of performing the journey will be 
the same in both cases." I must, however, admit that the 
gradients, to which the learned doctor alludes, are of the class 
now known as "favourable," or flatter than 1 in 140 ; still, I 
fearlessly assert, that even on ascending and descending planes, 
where gradients of one hundred feet per mile are used, the 
loss of time and speed will not amount to more than 30 per 
cent., under disadvantageous circumstances, as contrasted with 
a level hue. This result I obtain from the working of English 

In 1845, the Board of Trade report that " such gradients as 
were before thought objectionable, are now adopted every day 
as a matter of course ; and as the capabilities of the locomotive 
have been enlarged, gradients of a class which woidd have been 
a few years ago altogether impracticable, have come into general 

Many statements have been hazarded relative to the increased 
friction of descending planes on curves, contrasted with a direct 
line. No practical result, however, of sufficient moment has 
been elicited that will decide this question. 

From my own experience I am clearly of opinion, where the 

118 On Railway Gradients. 

permanent way is well laid, sufficient play being allowed 
between the flanges of the wheels and the gauge of way, and 
the outer rail sufficiently raised to counteract centrifugal force, 
that the difference of friction on an inclined plane, by curves of 
not less than half a mile radius, or by straight line, is of very 
trifling value, and would be, perhaps, barely perceptible. 

I have purposely refrained from entering at length upon the 
working of gradients, contenting myself with furnishing 
the most striking results of experiments on lines bearing 
analogy to those of Victoria ; and, shall now commence a de- 
scription of the physical peculiarities observable, in prosecuting 
the railway surveys in this province. 

Having been professionally engaged for two years, examining 
this colony for the purposes of railway communication, I feel 
I am entitled to speak in a more authoritative manner, than I 
should otherwise be justified, and shall now give a hasty sketch 
of the features of the country examined in selecting the routes 
of our railways. I most sincerely hope that the discussion of 
this subject will be full, free, and explicit ; as it will tend to 
throw much information on what is now a vexed question. 

Before entering upon an exposition of the necessary inclines 
on the trunk lines of railway in this province, it will be im- 
perative upon me to describe the physical peculiarities which 
exist in various localities. 

A very general conviction has hitherto existed amongst all 
classes, professional and otherwise, that this country is pecu- 
liarly adapted for railways, on account of its level character. 
In illustration of this, I beg to refer you to the report upon 
Internal Communication, by the Commissioners appointed by 
Mr. La Trobe ; in which you will find this statement fully verified. 
I shall hereafter show how incorrect has been this supposition, 
and how entirely the reverse is the case. One gentleman has 
lately written a very able pamphlet on railway economy, and has 
endeavoured to prove, that because a point inland 47 miles, 
is 1886 feet above low water, Hobson's Bay, the "necessary 
gradient" is only 1 in 1 31. The point in question, to which 
allusion is made, is the apex of the dividing range near Mount 
Macedon ; and by the rule the author lays down, the necessary 
gradient should be 1 in 118, as neither the height nor length is 
correctly stated ; the former being 1911 feet, and the latter 43 
miles. Again, the " necessary gradient," on the line to Kil- 
more, is stated to be 1 in 208, it should be 1 in 138 the length 
being 31 miles and height 1188 feet. It is further stated, 
" there is no necessity to go over the ranges at the high points 

On Railway Gradients. 119 

selected." This is an assumption not in the power of the 
writer to prove, as I fearlessly assert that in all adopted lines 
permanently surveyed, the lowest crossing of the range has been 
a desideratum imperatively enforced. The lowest practicable 
crossings of the range have been found. 

In another pamphlet, addressed to the Melbourne Chamber 
of Commerce, the writer in sketching out proposed routes of 
lines to the Gold Fields, states : — " It is evident therefore, that 
the best course would be by Keilor to Gisborne, letting the line 
diverge from Gisborne to Ballaarat, as near as possible to 
Blackwood on one side, &c." 

I imagine, the author could not at the time of writing this, 
have ever left the immediate vicinity of Melbourne : as I ven- 
ture to declare that a more impracticable country than that 
from Gisborne to Ballaarat via Blackwood, cannot be found on 
the face of the earth : range towers above range, and preci- 
pitous gullies are replaced by broken craggy cliffs and rocky 
chasms. Examining this country from the valley of the Ler- 
derderg, this truth is strikingly apparent, and every one who 
knows the locality will fully acquit me of the slighest ex- 

Persons having a knowledge of the interior of this country, 
are aware how singularly abrupt and sudden is the rise of the 
table land. I cannot offer a better illustration corroborative of 
this fact, than the country in immediate contiguity to Bacchus 
Marsh, where the table land rises from an elevation of 500 feet, 
to an altitude of 1330 feet above low water, Hobson's Bay ; and 
this occurs in a distance of 6 J miles. The ruling gradient, 
according to a ride before quoted, is here 1 in 41. 

The Gold Fields of Victoria, are nearly all situate to the north 
of a high mountain range traversing this province from east 
to west. Possessing the attractions of wealth, population, and 
enterprise, they naturally constitute a most important feature in 
considering the routes of lines ; and, as no railway can approach 
them without first crossing this high land, familiarly known as 
the Coast Range, it becomes a matter of great interest and no 
small moment to the engineer, to know which is the most 
favourable point for doing so. In describing the contour of 
Victoria, on either side of the mountains, I shall commence by 
glancing at the country immediately south of them, taking 
Melbourne as the great centre from which all lines will radiate. 

Melbourne appears, on a cursory examination of the map of 
this colony, to be the centre of a vast amphitheatre, the outer- 
most confines of which is the Dividing Range, most distinctly 

120 On Railiuay Gradients. 

marked in the distant horizon. To the north-east is Mount 
Disappointment and the Plenty Range, ending a view at once 
bold and picturesque ; to the north-north-west towers Mount 
Macedon, the Olympus of the forest : massive, abrupt, and grand, 
even in shadowy outline, beyond whose heights the eye cannot 
wander ; to the west is Mount Blackwood looming in the dis- 
tance, a landmark almost as familiar as Macedon itself. These 
mountains are all situate and form the apex of the Watershed, 
from whence all the rivers in Victoria take their rise ; those 
to the north draining into the Murray, and those to the south 
following their various ducts to the sea. 

Between the Coast Range and Melbourne, another peculiarity 
in the features of the country occurs, presenting an outline 
scarcely less marked than the coast range. This has been found 
an equal, if not a greater obstacle to encounter. What I allude 
to is the sudden elevation of the Table Land at the extreme 
boundaries of the plains and entrance to the timbered country. 
This singular freak of nature is more prominently marked in 
some localities than others, but still preserves its entirety of 
character, approach it in whatever direction you may. To the 
north, it stands up in high relief and bars the way ; at Sunbury, 
or north-west, it is again observable, and here prominently so, 
the plains on the south-west side of Jackson's Creek being 1209 
feet above low water, Hobson's Bay ; whilst, in a northerly direc- 
tion, 4 miles distant, a rise of 300 feet has been effected. In 
the west at Bacchus Marsh, it forms the Pentland Hills ; is again 
observable at the Anakies ; then at the Moorabool, and still in 
the far west. 

As I before stated, this sudden rise in the table land presents 
to the Engineer a difficulty second only to the passage of the 
dividing range, and is a point to which I will especially draw 
your attention. 

I now ask you to follow me, whilst endeavouring to pourtray 
the salient features of the country, between the coast range and 
the Murray. 

The Murray forms the channel into which all the waters of 
North Victoria drain, and presents on all sides the lowest ground 
in the interior : hence, it may be inferred, that the summit of 
the hills being passed, no obstacles will present themselves in 
following a northern route. 

This, however, is not the case, as will be apparent to any one 
who has possessed himself of the information on this head, in the 
Railway Report of the Honorable the Surveyor General ; there, 
it is most clearly shewn, that the difficulties of ascent and descent 

On Railway Gradients. 121 

do not cease, until the level plains are reached ; a point some 
miles north of Bendigo. On the summit of Mount Alexander 
this opinion can be readily tested ; from it will be seen the 
intricacies of the country, extending from Mount Beckwith on 
the west, to a point many miles east of Mount Camel. 

This large tract of country appears broken and rugged ; is 
traversed with ranges and gullies of a most formidable character ; 
and many of the abrupt declivities far exceed those on the sea- 
board side of the mountains. 

» North of Bendigo, from east to west, the plains extending to 
the Murray afford every facility for the construction of Railways. 
In illustration, I may state, that on a line of upwards of 46 miles, 
the descent is only 204 feet, giving a ruling gradient of 1 in 

Having as briefly as possible glanced over the features of the 
country, between Melbourne and the Murray, I will describe the 
leading difficulties to be contended against, and shew the means 
adopted to insure the most perfect routes. 

In conducting the Railway Surveys in Victoria, two large 
parties were established under the guidance of the Engineer-in- 
Chief. The instructions in all preliminary surveys were to obtain 
the most efficient working gradients and if time did not permit 
the survey of alternative lines, transverse sections of the country 
were to be taken, with a view to the ultimate improvement of routes, 
when the permanent survey was decided upon. If a great diffi- 
culty of obtaining an easy gradient arose ; as at Sunbury, Bacchus 
Marsh, the Moorabool and again on the " Range" as at Kilmore, 
East Macedon, Woodend, the heads of the Loddon and Werribee, 
and Jowerrk Jowerrk, near Ballaarat, the most extended surveys 
were made, and lines run in every possible direction to ensure the 
most favourable passage of the mountains. Professional men 
will believe this, when I state, that a transverse section of the 
country has been taken between Macedon and Mount Blackwood 
and over all points upon which a doubt could be raised. Many 
minor features, have doubtless, not as yet received that attention 
they require, from the fact, that the permanent survey in those 
localities has not been decided upon. When that has been done, 
I have no hesitation in affirming, that the best workable line will 
be the one selected. 

As in theory, the most perfect line is that which is uniformly 
straight and level : so have the permanent surveys of Victorian 
bines been laid down, to approximate as closely as circumstances 
would admit, to this standard. 

In Victoria, many difficulties intervene between points which 

122 On Railway Gradients. 

cannot be overcome by either a long cutting or a tunnel ; and 
in exemplification of this I would instance the country imme- 
diately south of the Pentland Hills. To obtain a line from 
Melbourne to Ballaarat this point must be passed ; and a sudden 
rise of 800 feet has to be overcome in 6J miles : and even after 
this summit is attained, the rise continues for some miles at an 
inclination of 1 in 100. The most natural conclusion for the public 
to arrive at is — -circumscribe the hills, and lengthen the gradients. 
This would be perfectly true and in accordance with all precedent 
could it be successfully carried into practice ; but in the instance, 
quoted, at Bacchus Marsh, we were placed in this dilemma : — On 
the north bank of the Werribee a most impracticable country 
occurs from Bacchus Marsh to Ballan, between the "Werribee and 
Glenmore (Griffith's station), a distance of 1J miles. A high flat 
topped mountain ridge intervenes, intersected with a deep ravine 
bearing a perfectly serrated appearance, and precluding the 
possibility of " winding round the hills" as has been frequently 
suggested. The valley of Glenmore then occurs, flanked on 
either side by basaltic cliffs, descending precipitously several 
hundred feet ; and, branching off to the south-west, a mountain 
range springs up and stays all progress there. 

It has been found at this point, after surveys of the most 
elaborate character have been undertaken, that it is impossible 
to ascend from the Barwon Creek, to the Iron Bark range, near 
Ingliston, except by the introduction of gradients of not less than 
1 in 50, to 1 in 60. 

In England, a watershed like this, rises suddenly and abruptly. 
Generally speaking, it can be pierced with a tunnel and there the 
difficulty ends ; but in Victoria, the Railway, must rise with the 
table land, and have its contour governed by it. From Melbourne 
to Bacchus Marsh, no difficulties of gradients occur ; the rise is 
most favourable and gentle, and from Ballan towards the coast 
range, no difficulty arises, demanding special comment. 

At Sunbury, close to Clarke's special survey, a difficulty 
of similar character to that at Bacchus Marsh occurs, which 
must be overcome by the introduction of a steep incline. After 
this the table land ascends uniformly easy till Gisborne is 

Between Gisborne and Woodend the Macedon range has to be 
crossed, a ride through the Black Forest acquaints the traveller 
of its peculiarities better than any written description will do. 
It has the same peculiarity of ascent previously noticed ; and 
although the most careful surveys have been made, and the 
country thoroughly explored for miles on either side of the moun- 

On Railway Gradients. 123 

tains, it lias been found necessary in the crossing of this natural 
difficulty, to adopt a steep incline. 

It would take too much time to describe the various summit 
levels occurring near Kilmore, on the north eastern line — at 
Elphinstone, at the Porcupine and the Alexandrian range, on the 
Mount Alexander line — at the head of the Werribee, at Dayles- 
ford and Mount Franklyn on the North Western line — at Jowerrk 
Jowerrk, Yandoit,andthe Limestone Creek on the west line and at 
the Moorabool, Buninyong and Warrenheip, on the Geelong and 
Ballaarat line. This information is obtainable in the report of 
Captain Clarke ; suffice it, therefore, to say, they partake of a 
similar nature to those previously enumerated, and are difficulties 
in the way of obtaining a comparatively perfect fine which cannot 
be overcome. 

Some idea of the importance attached to the subject of Railway 
Gradients in Victoria, may be gleaned from the extended surveys 
made. The public cannot be aware of a tithe of the information 
collected. When I state, however, that more than 120 miles have 
been permanently surveyed, 1200 miles of Railway temporarily 
surveyed, and nearly 2000 miles of tranverse sections taken, it 
will be conceded, I think, that the question has not been slurred. 

Many of these sections have been taken over ground not pre- 
viously surveyed, and an estimate may be formed of the diffi- 
culties the engineer had to encounter in travelling over ground 
little known ; nevertheless, the coast range has been thoroughly 
examined, from a point some miles east of Mount Disappoint- 
ment to the country far west of Ballaarat ; and its most favour- 
able crossing for Railway purposes has been by gradients of 1 
in 60 to 1 in 78, near Kilmore. Unfortunately, this is on a line 
far to the east of the direct approach to the Gold Fields, and 
would involve a most circuitous route to be made available for 
that purpose. 

It is evident, that the disadvantages Victorian Railways will 
labour under, are those of heavy inclines ; experience, however, 
has fully proved, that grades far more severe, occurring in 
Europe and America, have been, and are daily worked to advan- 
tage ; and, it is not too much to hope that the improvements 
daily making in the rolling stock of railways, will enable 
the most unfavourable inclines, to be worked with far greater 
speed and less loss of power than at present they can be. 

That Railways will do much for Victoria has never been 
denied : — that her resources will increase and multiply beyond all 
precedent : — that her mineral wealth will be developed to an extent 
unparalleled in the world's history is not too much to be expected. 

124 Recent Discoveries in 

Her beautiful park-like scenery, clothed with a velvet sward> 
and luxuriant with vegetation ; her plains abounding in the 
richest soil now wild and tenantless and her lightly timbered 
woods and forest land, where the prolific virgin earth has never 
been disturbed, offer inducements to the settler unknown to 
other colonies, but now rendered unavailable for want of com- 
munication with populated districts. 

In conclusion, I would add, that I have written this paper 
with the hope that more attention will be paid to the subject of 
Kailways than has hitherto been done, and to describe the 
physical peculiarities existing in .Victoria, probably unknown to 
a majority of the inhabitants of Melbourne. 

Art. XV. — Recent Discoveries in Natural History on the 
Lower Murray. By "William Blandowski, Esq. 


[Read before the Institute, 2nd September, 1857.] 

[Preliminary Report (No. IV.), Addressed to the Honorable 
the President of Public Lands and Works. By order, 
handed over to the Philosophical Institute] 

Gentlemen, — The Honorable the President of the Board of Pub- 
He Lands and Works has permitted me to lay before you theresults 
of my investigations from the 1st of December, 1856, to August, 
1857. It would be impossible for me to give you, at this 
present moment, a full account of all my observations ; there- 
fore, accept the brief outlines I now offer to you according 
to your request made to the Government. 

In order that you may understand more fully the nature of 
the country which I have traversed, and the difficulties with 
which I had to contend, and what prospects I had on leaving 
Melbourne, I beg to read to you an extract of a single page 
from Surveyor "White's Beport, dated May 28th, 1849, who 
surveyed the district visited by me : which document was 
officially handed over to me before I undertook my late tour. 

October 30, 1849. — " Again encamped at Messrs. Baird and 
Hodgkinson's, having been so fortunate as to obtain a small 
supply of water by digging in the sand at a certain spot — thus, 
having been eleven days without water, succeeded in saving the 
bullocks, with the exception of four, that died, and in bringing 

Natioral History on the Lower Murray. 125 

them, the drays, and the remainder of the equipment out of the 

November 6. — " Left party to ride through the scrub to 
the Murray, in the direction that the South Australian Boun- 
dary will take, taking two horses, intending to return the 
same way. 

November 12. — " On the sixth day after leaving the camp, 
one of the horses was unable to proceed, not having had water 
for four days : compelled to leave him. Led on the other horse 
some distance, when he also gave in, and lay down ; took the 
saddle, &c, off him, and lay down beside him, being scarcely 
able to stand, the day intolerably hot ; bled the horse, and drank 
about half-a-pint of his blood, which was black, thick, and 
unhealthy-looking, and had the same bad smell as his breath. 
Got up ; staggered on with the greatest difficulty ; and reached 
the river in a state of extreme exhaustion in the afternoon." 

From this extract you will perceive what were my hopes. 
Nothing, however, could make me in the least faint-hearted in 
the execution of my self-selected duties, and which, it appeared 
to me, would be of very great interest as regards the scientific 
investigation of a country hitherto considered a barren desert. 

I. On the 2nd of December, 1856, 1 received orders from the 
Government to proceed to the junction of the Darling and 
Murray Eivers, for the purpose of making investigations on the 
natural history of that district, and also, with a view of collecting 
as many specimens as possible for the National Museum, and 
marking the distribution of animal life along my route. 

I left Melbourne on the 6th December, 1856, with a very 
complete field equipment, consisting of five horses, two bullocks, 
two drays, four tents, a full set of tools and implements, and 
also a photographic apparatus. Four men were allowed me as 
my staff, and I had before long to regret that I had made a bad 
selection. The hardships, roughnesses, and privations of bush 
life were unknown to them, and I was soon deserted and left to 
myself, being, in consequence of this, exposed to innumerable 
delays and inconveniences, so that I had very great difficulty in 
fulfilling the duties which were expected of me. 

It would, however, be unjust on my part were I not to 
acknowledge services, rendered to me by my assistant, Mr. G. 
Krefft, who, from the beginning to the end of my undertaking, 
most faithfully shared my lot. I may also mention a former 
faithful servant of mine, James Manson, who, when written to 
by me, joined my party at Mount Hope. He is one of those 
trustworthy Scotchmen who, in this respect, have raised the 


126 Recent Discoveries in 

fame of their nation. Krefft and Manson were all, that held out 
my cause from eighteen persons, successively engaged by me for 
the Government service. 

On the 27th December I arrived at Kew's Swamp, between 
the Murray River and Mount Hope, about 170 miles N. by W. 
from Melbourne. On the 3rd of March, having re-organised 
my party, I started towards Lake Boga and the junction of the 
Murrumbidgee and the Murray Eivers, in a N.W. direction, 
about 130 miles distant from the former station. I was deceived 
in my expectations even here, and I therefore left my party, 
pushing forward alone to the junction of the Darling and 
Murray Eivers, where they arrived safe, but in a most 
deplorable condition, on the 8th of April. This being their 
ultimate destination, they formed a permanent encampment at a 
place called by the natives Mondelhmin, about 400 miles from 
Melbourne, and opposite the junction of the Darling and Murray 

I myself started alone, for the purpose of examining the banks 
of the river westwards along the Murray, to the neighbourhood 
of Moorundee, and rejoined my party at Mondellimin, after 
having been absent three weeks, and ridden, in that short period, 
over 600 miles of country, crossing the river several times, which 
has a width of from 500 to 600 feet. 

From MondeUirnin I started again on a more extended excursion 
on the 27th of May, in a N.E. direction, up the Darling Eiver 
towards Mount Murchison, a distance of 300 miles, and returned, 
after an absence of 24 days, to my encampment, having been 
obliged to swim the Murray twice, the Darling seven times, and 
several smaller streams. The distance traversed by me in that 
period was 700 miles. 

On the 6th of August I left my camp in charge of Krefft and 
Manson, and proceeded to Melbourne, taking with me the 
valuable collection of specimens of Natural History, which had 
been accumulating in my tent during my stay at Mondellimin, 
to the extent of twenty-eight boxes and parcels, containing in 
all about 16,000 specimens, registered under 2,000 different 

I went down the Murray Eiver in the steamer " Albury" to 
Port Goolwa ; from thence by the steamer " Corio " through the 
mouth of the Murray Eiver to Adelaide ; from thence to Mel- 
bourne by the " Havilah ;" and arrived safe here, together with 
my collection, on the 18th August, having travelled a distance 
of about 1300 miles. 

II. Having thus given you a brief outline of my proceedings, 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 127 

and the country I have travelled, I now beg to lay before you 
the result of my labours, observing, in the meantime, that the 
mechanical part — viz., that of preserving the specimens — was 
done by my white laborers alone, whilst the specimens were 
obtained by the assistance of the aborigines, to whom I am 
indebted for all the information and discoveries I have made, 
so that I can but claim a small share of the credit of having, 
with my party, been successfully exploring the desert of Aus- 
tralia for eight months. 

I can add but little to the description given by Sir Thomas 
Mitchell of the physical character of the country which I have 
traversed, and which he visited before me, but allow me at least 
to give you an outline of the most prominent features of the 

Having passed the bold and steep Dividing Eanges at Lance- 
field, I descended into the rich and extensive grassy plains be- 
tween the Campaspe and Loddon Eivers, which are strik- 
ingly similar to the Gawler Town plains, in South Australia, 
and which are destined at some future period to supply the 
Victorian market with fat cattle, when the benefits of irrigation 
are better understood by our colonists, and when, by means of a 
railway, access to Melbourne from the Murray District will be 
rendered easy. 

Mount Hope and Mount Pyramid, characterised by their 
picturesque appearance, arising from enormous blocks of granite, 
towering in bold rehef, one above the other out of the alluvial 
flats, will at some future day be the Madeira and Oporto of 
Victoria. No spot offered to my eye a finer prospect of success 
in wine growing in Victoria, than this small area of about 30,000 
acres of splendid soil. 

The remainder of the country in the neighbourhood of the 
Murray, consists of barren, stiff and firm clay flats of remark- 
able evenness, partly covered with box-trees or salsolae bushes, 
and in other parts with dense, impenetrable mallee scrub, easily 
distinguished at a great distance by its dirty looking, dark olive 
green leaves. Wherever the Mallee Scrub is met with, the 
soil is interspered with numerous nodules of limestone. The 
bright green of cypress forests, with the duller aspect of the 
oak, growing on sand hummocks interrupts the monotony of the 
box-tree flats. Now and then a cluster of Eucalypti growing 
along the banks of the Billibong, and ornamenting the 
banks of the slowly flowing Murray, occasionally relieve 
the weary traveller with their refreshing looks, and remind 
him, that ultimately the sheep and cattle of those regions will 

128 Recent Discoveries in 

have to make room for flourishing dairy stations, silk growing 
plantations and wine producing farms. 

Peculiar looking dried up lakes of several miles, in diameter, 
in the neighbourhood of Lake Boga, and having their north-east 
shores considerably elevated in the form of an amphitheatre, 
above the remaining portion of the soil, extend between 
the Lachlan and the Darling, and sweep around Candilla Lake 
in the direction of Lake Torrens, of which they appear to be the 
ancient remains. Before the Murray and its tributaries were able 
to break through the limestone cliffs, near the overland corner, 
in longitude 140° and from the present channel of that river, a 
chain of high, picturesque, but barren sand hummocks, appear 
to have been formed, characterising the last violent struggle, 
which took place between a shallow sea and a large accumu- 
lation of sweet rainwater in the valley of the Murray, leaving 
on the one side now and then a fresh water lake, which by 
means of an open channel had communication with the newly 
formed Elver Murray, and on the other side now and then a 
concentrated saltwater lake, which, when dried up in summer, 
forms a crust of salt, covering its bottom, and which might tempt 
a skater to try his skill on the icy looking surface. 

The Golgol Ranges exist only in name and the charming blue 
of a high mountainous district appears for the first time, after 
having passed Laidley Ponds, and even here at a great distance. 

The Anna branch of the Darling has its junction at least fifty 
miles higher up the river, than is shown by Arrowsmith's map. 

Extensive polygonum flats, and the absence of reed-beds, are 
characteristic of the banks of the Darling. I may also mention the re- 
markable fact of a strange disease, prevailing in that district on an 
extensive scale amongst the horses ; a kind of madness befalling 
these animals, which causes them to rise and plunge, rear high into 
the air, and in most instances finish by committing suicide, either 
by falling over the banks into the river or breaking their necks. 
The disease commences with a dullness ; shortly afterwards the 
animal shies at any object, thereupon gets completely mad, and 
if it should recover, loses its former tone of voice, which 
changes into the cry of a mule ; while, all the qualities for which 
the horse is so justly esteemed are lost. 

In latitude 32° south, a new vegetation begins. The Atriplex 
plains disappear, and zebra-Like spotted wood and native orange 
trees grow in the richer soil. The whole country, as regards 
vegetation, is at least three months in advance of the southern 

Arrived at Mount Murchison, the last outpost of civilization, 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 129 

the station there belonging to the brothers H. and B. Jamieson, 
I made an excursion of twenty-five miles to the north into the 
untrodden district of Eastern 'Australia. The panorama which 
there presented itself to my view from the summit of a high hill, 
called by me Mount Jamieson, was grand. The whole horizon 
was closed in with high blue mountains and picturesque hills, 
and my feelings then can only be understood by one, who himself 
has been on the verge of civilization, fin this case 700 milesfromMel- 
bourne), and gazed into the unknown wilds expanding before him. 

III. Concerning the geological features of the country, I have 
but little information to give to some of you, as beyond the 
dividing ranges, with the exception of coarse grained granite at 
Mount Hope and Pyramid Hill, nothing peculiar exists on Vic- 
torian ground along the Lower Murray, but a pale yellow 
mallee sandstone, which is superseded from the junction of the 
Murrumbidgee to the Darling by brown colored ferruginous 
sandstone, and in the neighbourhood of the latter place by a 
dirty, yellow limestone, like sandstone, which appears to form 
the connecting link with the Murray limestone cliffs at Overland 
corner. I was not able to discover any fossils in Victoria, but 
thousands of the most beautifid in form are washed out of their 
original matrix on the South Australian side of the river. The 
hard outside crust of the fossils has resisted the action of the 
water and atmosphere to a surprising degree, and shows the most 
elegant forms imaginable in a perfect state of preservation. 

Nothing remarkable besides this appeared to me, except at 
Mount Murchison the zig-zag, rugged, projecting rocks, appa- 
rently of the Silurian era. The quartzose sandstone, admirably 
adapted for millstones will at some future period supply this 
article to this colony. The natives obtain their supply in this 
respect from here, and within a radius of 600 miles get furnished 
.from this district with stones for grinding various, seeds. 
This is the district of which the natives gave Captain Sturt 
the account (generally believed to be fabulous) " That the sharply 
pointed stones and great rocks would fall down upon and crush 
visitors, and that even if they escaped from this danger, they 
would be killed by the heat, and that neither grass, water, nor 
wood are to be met with ; that the wells are very deep, and that 
the cattle are unable to chink out of them, and, finally, that the 
water is salt, and that the natives chop down bundles of rushes 
to soak it up. This is no fiction but reality, described in the 
original language of the natives as relating to Mount Murchison. 

IV In the Kiver Murray and also in Reedy Lake, I have 
found sweetwater sponges in great quantities. I am not aware 

130 Recent Discoveries in 

of the existence of sponges in sweetwater in other countries ; I 
therefore mention to yon this fact. 

I had opportunities of collecting a large number and variety 
of spiders, a beautiful species of spined lobster, and two other 
varieties of crawfish, and three kinds of shrimps — all found in 
the Murray. Concerning the insects collected, I need only say, 
there are 3000 delivered to the Museum, where all orders are 
represented which exist in the country. 

Only two mussel shells were known to exist in the Murray. 
I have the pleasure of informing you that I have found eight 
bivalves, belonging to Unio family, and six univalves, be- 
longing to Lymnea, Succinea, and Physa, of which three are 
viviperous. I have preserved a large number of them in 
spirits of wine, and they can be seen at the Museum. 

There were only three kinds of fish known to exist in the 
Murray, and of which, Sir Thomas Mitchell gives good draw- 
ings. I beg to lay before you nineteen different forms of fish 
living in the waters of the Murray and Billibong. 


- ^ 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 131 

, Plate L, Fig. 1, — Plotosus tandanvs. (H.) 

Eel-fish or "Kenaru," of the Yarree Yarree. 

An olive-green coloured fish, with eight long feelers round 
its mouth. Eyes yellow. An Asiatic form of fish, which lives 
here in the Murray and in Billibongs. Is very much esteemed 
by the natives as food, and prohibited to their young 
men. Swims with great rapidity, even in shallow water. 
"Ploughs the water with its powerful dorsal fin, and is therefore 
easily recognised and speared by the natives. They often hurt 
their fingers on the sharp back fin, and then say it is a " saucy 
fellow." It is unquestionably the best eating fish in the 
Murray, and grows to the size of two feet, weighing from 7 
to 8 lbs. It hives principally on very small shells, and muddy 
spots are its favorite places of abode. It is not scaled. - 
Plate I., Fig. 2. — Megalope Caillentassart. (D.) 

"Manur," of the Yarree Yarree. " 

A fish found in the neighbourhood of Boston. Is of a 
silvery colour, and has on the back, behind the dorsal fin, a 
very elongated and elastic backray. Leaps frequently out of 
the water," and is easily caught by its elongated ray in thin 
fine nets, laid by the natives horizontally on the water. The 
fish gets entangled in the twine, and cannot escape. Is 
most numerous in the Darling, but is also found above and 
below the junction of the Murray and Darling Pavers. In 
June and July it is considered a delicacy by the natives 
and forms their principal food during these two months. 
The young women are not permitted to eat them, from a 
belief, that if they did, all fish in the river would die ; but in 
reality, because it is thought to be an aphrodisiac, this fish 
. being very fat and nourishing. It is also placed on the 
top of graves, to point out the direction in which he lives, 
who caused the death of the inmate. Therefore, this fish is 
highly esteemed. It is remarkable that this fish contains an 
uncommon quantity of small soft bones. It grows only from 
10 to 14 inches. 

Plate I., Fig. 3. — Cernua Bidyana. (C.) 

"Baggack," of the Yarree Yarree. 

Sir Thomas Mitchell has already given a good drawing of 
this fish. It grows to about 18 inches in length. 

Plate I., Fig. 4.— Cernua Eadesii. (B.) 

"Buruitjall," of the Yarree Yarree, 

A fish easily recognized by its low forehead, big belly and 
sharp spine. 

132 t Recent Discoveries in 

Plate II., Fig. 5. — Cernua Nicholsonia. (T.) 

' ' ■ , "Karpa," of the Yarrea Yarree 

Lives on crawfish. Fishes 3, 4 and 5 are all difficult to dis- 
tinguish from each other. They live in the Murray and its Billy- 
bongs. Grows to the length of 14 inches. 

Plate II., Fig 6. — Cernua Ifflaensis. (Q.) 

"Bipe PurritjaU," of the Yarree Yarree. 

Is a little fish from two to three inches in length, and only found 
in the waters of the Billybongs. Colour dirty greenish ; irregular 
dotted lines running over the upper part of the body ; body 

Plate II., Fig. 7. — Cernua (?) Wilkiensis. (P.) 

" Mallupit," of the Yarree Yarree. 

This fish is very small, and lives in the Billybongs. 

Plate II., Fig. 8. — Kohna Mackennce. . (L.) 

"Kohn," of the Yarree Yarree.' 

A fine little fish, which seldom grows to the length of three 
inches. ', 

' Plate II, Fig. 9. — Turruitja Achenson. (M.) 

. ■ " Turruitje," of the Yarree Yarree. 

Is found in the Murray and adjacent Billybongs. 

Plate II, Fig. 10. — Jerrina Dobreensis. (K.) 

" Jen-in," of the Yarree Yarree. 

This bright coloured fish soon attracts the attention of the little 
black children by its pinkish breast and dark greenish body, with 
twelve intense bluish stripes, running longitudinally along the 
body, commencing a little beyond the middle and pointing towards 
the tail. The dorsal and ventral fins are of a yellow colour. The 
tail is orange. This fish very seldom grows larger than five inches, 
and is roasted together with the other little fishes by the natives in 
the following manner : — They take a few hot stones and some 
clods of clay, throw in the whole lot of fishes, turn them round for 
a few minutes, then take out again the hot stones and eat the 
whole messhke "bubble and squeak" from a piece of bark, on 
which these little fishes have been previously prepared. The 
Billybongs are the principal abodes of this fish. 


Mid „ f AS ! U « Ma 

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I— I 


t— ( 


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■ mmjkA 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 133 

Plate III, Fig. 11. (E.) 

" Poke," of tho Yarreo Yarree. 

This little spotted trout is a delicious eating fish, and is not only 
found in the Billybongs and the River Murray, but also observed 
by me in the Yarra Yarra, near Melbourne. It is nearly tran- 
sparent, of a slightly greenish colour, with blackish spots of large 
size on the back, and of a smaller description on the belly. 
Becomes a fat, plump Httle fish, seldom larger than six or seven 
inches. . . . 

Plate III, Fig. 12. — liter anka Irvingu. 

" Uterank," of the Yarree Yarree. 

This long thin fish seldom grows larger than seven inches, and 
is caught by the boys jn the Yarra Yarra, in great numbers. Is 
considered a very fine eating fish, but appears to be rare in 
the Murray, and only serves to support the fish drawn at figure 15, 
which principally feeds on it. 

Plate III, Fig. 13. — Gristes Macquariensis. (S.) 

" Yaturr," of the Yarree Yarree. 

Is of a dirty green colour and has less spots, than Gristes Peelii. 
In both the scales ar.e small and covered by an epidermis. Both 
are characteristic forms of the Murray River and its tributaries,- 
and the principal fishes on which the natives subsist during the 
greater part of the year. They grow from 36 to 40 inches in 
length. In winter, when the river overflows it banks, the 
natives spear them at night by firelight, while sleeping behind an 
old log ; in the summer season, from January to June, when the 
river is low and the water clear, this fish sleeps in the river, behind 
a log or stone. The native, spear in hand, (now an iron rod of „ 
about six feet in length), dives, head foremost, to the bottom of 
the river, where the fish sleeps and there spears it, an exciting 
sport even to the white man. 

Plate III, Fig. 14. — Gristes Peelii. (J.) 

" Barnta," of the Yarree Yarree. 

This fish, as well as the preceding, No. 13, have both been 
already observed in America, I may as well allude here to Mr. 
Edward "Wilson's experiment of transferring these fishes to the 
rivers joining the sea on the southern side of the range, and I 
believe them likely to prosper, if they find ample food in those 
rivers ! 

134 Recent Discoveries in 

Plate IV., Fig. ^h.—Tilka Wilsonia. (A.) 

A fish of middling size, grows from 14 to 18 inches ; is 
finely scaled. Is known to the Gunbower natives as " Pollu- 
gunder," and to the Loddon tribe as " Birnnett." Lives in the 
Murray and Billybongs. 

Plate IV., Fig. 16. — Collundera Mulleriana. (0.) 

"Collundera," of the Yarree Yarree. 

This fish does not grow above three inches, and lives prin- 
cipally in the Billybongs. Is of an olive-green colour, has 
white eyes, and has large scales for its size. 

Plate IV, Fig. 17. 

"Loetj," of the Yarree Yarree. 

The smallest sized fish, which I have observed in the Austra- 
lian waters. Lives in the Billybongs, and is only two inches 
in length and rarely grows larger. 

Plate IV, Fig. 18.— (R) 

Kurrina Macadamia. - '-' 

A bluish-green small fish, with dark green stripes on the head, 
and spotted with darker dots, particularly visible on the tail and 
fins. Lives principally on little crawfishes. The " Koerin" or 
Kurrin," takes its abode in the hollows of the banks of the Billy- 
bongs, there watching for its prey. 

Plate IV Fig. 19.— (N.) 

Brosmius Bleasdalii. 

A slimy, slippery fish. Lives in the mud. Is of a violet 
bluish colour on the belly. The whole upper surface is of a dirty 
olivish-green colour, with numerous irregular dark patches: 
Principally found in Billybongs, but also found by me in the 
Yarra Yarra River. The Yarree Yarree natives . name it 
" Paltk." It grows to about seven inches in length. 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 135 

Drawings of nine different kinds of frogs are before you. 
Five of them at least are new. 

Of snakes I have observed, and gathered twenty-four distinct 
species, and of which sixteen will be found to be entirely new. 
Amongst them I have to mention to you, that I have discovered 
the Boa Constrictor of Australia,* being in its character exactly 
abke to that of South America. It is much smaller, but climbs 
trees, and is harmless to human beings, waiting for its prey in 
the topmost branches of high gum trees, from which it pounces 
upon and crushes its prey, devouring the whole. I was in- 
clined to make before you an experiment with a live snake, but as 
I have had to deliver up the specimen to the National Museum 
I am unable to do so. 

At Lake Boga I was exposed to some danger in nresenr.p. nf 


Pages 131 to 134 inclusive, with four Plates, are omitted from 
this volume of the Transactions, by an order of the Council, of 
date, 7th April, 1858. 

+ ^wjvyij.^ ulia, xTXTKcmg xumge uie 

Bee Eater and Ked-rumped Parrot line begins and extends far 
to the north. 

The Eos, or rose-bellied Cockatoo appears not to overstep 143° 
longitude westwards, and begins to make its appearance with 35° 
latitude northwards. 

The crested Pigeon begins to appear in the latitude of the 
Murrumbidgee and extends northwards. 

The peaceful ground Dove appears at the junction of the 
Darling and Murray, also the porphyric-crowned parrakeet, and 
Bourke's grass parrakeet. 

* Its scales round the head, and the thorns on the vent very nearly identical " 
with the Boaviridis, or Bojobi of the Brazilians. — Bl. 

t Just published by Mr. Gould in his last supplementary number on the Birds 
of Australia. 

X This bird is not new. It should have been named brown red throat, or 
Pyrrholoemus brunneus. — Bl. 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 135 

Drawings of nine different kinds of frogs are before you. 
Five of them at least are new. 

Of snakes I have observed, and gathered twenty-four distinct 
species, and of which sixteen will be found to be entirely new. 
Amongst them I have to mention to you, that I have discovered 
the Boa Constrictor of Australia,* being in its character exactly 
alike to that of South America. It is much smaller, but climbs 
trees, and is harmless to human beings, waiting for its prey in 
the topmost branches of high gum trees, from which it pounces 
upon and crushes its prey, devouring the whole. I was in- 
clined to make before you an experiment with a live snake, but as 
I have had to deliver up the specimen to the National Museum 
I am unable to do so. 

At Lake Boga I was exposed to some danger in presence of 
my men, by a, very poisonous snake, on which I had inadver- 
tently placed my feet. 

Of Lizards I have seventeen species, some are of a very re- 
markable form, and as I have never seen more than six kinds, 
I believe my assertion that eleven new species are added to the 
natural history of this country, will be found correct. The 
drawings are now before you. 

Three different kinds of Turtle are known to exist in the 
Murray and Darling. I have found two of them, and forwarded 
eggs, young and old specimens, alive and dead to the Museum. 

Of Birds I have only been able to discover three new forms; 
of which I beg to lay before you drawings and specimens of the 
brown-capped Pomatorihnus,^* the rufus-tailed Cuckoo, and the 
brown-throated Acanthiza.]: Beyond the Dividing Range the 
Bee Eater and Red-rumped Parrot line begins and extends far 
to the north. 

The Eos, or rose-bellied Cockatoo appears not to overstep 143° 
longitude westwards, and begins to make its appearance with 35° 
latitude northwards. 

The crested Pigeon begins to appear in the latitude of the 
Murrumbidgee and extends northwards. 

The peaceful ground Dove appears at the junction of the 
Darling and Murray, also the porphyric-crowned parrakeet, and 
Bourke's grass parrakeet. 

* Its scales round the head, and the thorns on the vent very nearly identical " 
with the Boaviridis, or Bojobi of the Brazilians. — Bl. 

t Just published by Mr. Gould in his last supplementary number on the Birds 
of Australia. 

X This bird is not new. It should have been named brown red throat, or 
Pyrrholcemus brunneus. — Bl. 

136 Recent Discoveries in 

In all. I have marked eleven distinct lines of the distribution 
of birds, which will be of utility in geographical illustrations. 

High up the Darhng I was informed that the red-crested 
black Cockatoo exists, but as I have not seen it myself, I can 
merely give you from various parts the corroborated information 
of the inhabitants. 

Of quadrupeds I have found twenty-six different species, of 
which eleven are not marsupial, and of which I have the plea- 
sure of announcing to you that five are entirely new to me. A 
great many of these, according to Gould's work, are only 
uniquely represented in the London Museum, and in my belief 
these unique qiiadrupeds are not the same, which I have brought 
with me. Most of these quadrupeds I have collected in large 
numbers, and they are entirely the results of the exertions of 
my friends the Yarree Yarree Aborigines, and for which I have 
given them flour, sugar, tea, blankets, clothing, and other small 
presents, amounting in all to about ,£200 in value. 

On the Darling I discovered a small animal which digs up 
the dead bodies of the natives and devours them. It is called 
by them Yakoo. 

V. Concerning the natives, I could communicate many new 
and interesting particulars to the Philosophical Institute but 
time forbids me entering upon the subject at present. The 
Loddon tribe or Gunbowers are of an athletic figure, wild, re- 
sisting civilisation well ; but even they diminis h in numbers 
in a most deplorable manner. Nearly all of them now 
possess firearms. They live principally on jypha or cala- 
mites roots, which they bake. In January they collect in large 
numbers to enjoy the fishing season on the Murray. Playing 
at sham-fights, is their amusement. In February they com- 
mence to fight in earnest with the neighbouring tribes, and 
have several hard combats. Their burial grounds are of a long 
oblong form, like their shields, and from 100 to 120 yards in 

At Swan Hill I have seen a native of a truly enormous size, 
and well proportioned, his breadth being in harmony with his 
great height. 

The fisher tribes in the neighbourhood of the junction of the 
Murrumbidgee and Murray, are distinguished by great scars or 
gashes along their backs, and which they inflict upon them- 
selves with burning sticks. It woidd require the stoical resig- 
nation of a Mucius Scaevola to endure the terrible pain, to 
which they expose themselves on losing a relative, when they 
burn their backs. Near the junction of the Darling the women 

Natural History on the Lower Murray. 137 

make large gashes in their thighs, breasts, and arms ; the men 
cut their heads with tomahawks. The graves are huts, covered 
with the "Manur" nets of the deceased, in which the Currincles 
have to sleep at night ; and the female relatives of the departed 
enter the tomb every morning before daybreak, giving expression 
to the most melancholy lamentations. On the Darling, they pile 
upon the top of the grave a large heap of Wood, light a little 
fire in front of it and cry bitterly. On leaving, the widow plants 
a green bough on the grave. 

At Goolwa, I saw a black fellow smoked and roasted after 
death on a scaffold, which performance was accompanied with 
many fantastic ceremonies. 

On the whole I have but to make the most deplorable state- 
ments concerning our natives. Extermination proceeds so rapidly, 
that the regions of the Lower Murray are already depopulated, 
and a quietude -reigns there which saddens the traveller who 
visited those districts a, few years ago. 

Aet. XVI. — On the Astronomy and Mythology of the Abori- 
gines of Victoria. By Wm. Edwabd Stanbeidge Esq., of 

[Bead before the Institute, 30th September, 1857.] 

I beg to lay before your honorable Institute the accompany- 
ing paper on the Astronomy and Mythology of the Aborigines, 
and in doing so I am sensitive of its imperfectness, but as it is 
now six years since I made any additions to it, and as my 
occupation does not lead me to that part of the country where I 
should be able to make further additions, I have presumed to 
present it to your society, hoping that it may be a means of 
assisting others to gather further traces of the people that are 
so fast passing away. 

This statement of the Astronomy and Mythology of the 
Aborigines is, as nearly as language will allow, word for word as 
they have repeatedly during some years stated it to me. It is 
in the language of, and has been gleaned from, the Booroung 
Tribe, who claim and inhabit the Mallee country in the neigh- 
bourhood of Lake Tyrill, and who pride themselves upon knowing 
more of Astronomy than any other tribe. 

The Aborigines in the neighbourhood of Mount Franklin have 

138 On the Astronomy and Mythology of 

names and Mythological Associations for a few of the stars, 
which names and associations are the same as those in nse with 
the Booroung's, who say that the earth is flat and was in dark- 
ness before the Sun was made by Pupperrimbul, (the little bird 
with the red patch above the tail), when it became light. He 
was one of the race that then inhabited the earth, and who are 
called Nurrumbunguttias or old spirits. They possessed fire 
and were of the same characteristics as the present race, but 
were translated in various forms to the heavens, before the present 
race came into existence. 

The Nurrumbunguttias still possess spiritual influences upon 
the earth ; whether of darkness, of the storm, or of craters, all the 
evil spirits are of them. They have also spiritual representatives 
in some creatures, as, for instance, if a pupperrimbul were to be 
killed, there would be a fearful fall of rain. 

All the stars, as well as all appearances in tyrille (space) are 
supposed to have emanated from the Nurrumbunguttias. 

Gnowee (Sun), an Emu's egg prepared and cast into (tyrille) 
space by Pupperrimbul before which the earth was in darkness. 
Some say the Emu's egg was prepared by Berm-berm-gle and 
carried into space (tyrille) by Penmen, (a small bird which they 
do not willingly destroy). 

Chargee Gnowee (Venus), sister of the sun and wife of Gin- 

Ginabongbearp (Foot of Day), (Jupiter) a chief of the Nur- 
rumbunguttias, and husband of Chargee Gnowee. 

Mityan (Moon), who falls in love with one of Unurgunite's 
wives, and while trying to induce her to run away with him, 
is discovered by Unurgunite, when a fight takes place ; Mityan 
is beaten, and runs away, and has been wandering ever since. 

Marpeankurrk (Arcturus), mother of Djuit and Weetkurrk. 
The discoverer of the Bittur, and the teacher of the Aborigines 
when and where to find it. When it is coming into season with 
them it is going out of season with her. The Bittur is the 
larvae of the wood ant, which is found in large communities, 
and of which the Aborigines are very fond. They subsist almost 
entirely upon it during part of „ the months of August and 
September. When she is in the north at evening, the Bittur 
are coming in season, when she sets with the sun the Bittur are 
gone and (Cotchi) summer begins. 

Djuit (Antares), son of Marpeankurrk. The stars on either 
side are his two wives. 

Neilloan (Lyra), (a Loan flying), the mother of Totyarguil 
and discoverer of the Loan eggs, which knowledge she imparted 

the Aborigines of Victoria. 139 

to the Aborigines. When the Loan eggs are coming into 
season on earth, they are going out of season with her. When 
she sits with the sun the Loan eggs are in season. 

Totyarguil (Aquilla), the son of Neilloan, and who, while 
bathing was killed by the Bunyips, his remains were afterwards' 
rescued by his uncle Collenbitchick. The stars on either side 
are his two wives. 

Karik Karik (the two stars in the end of the tail of Scorpio), 
, a male and a female Falcon. 

Berm-berm-gie (two large stars in the fore-legs of Centaurus). 
Two brothers who were noted for their courage and destructive- 
ness, and who spear and kill Tchingal. The eastern stars of 
Crux are the points of the spears that have passed through him, 
the one at the foot through his neck, and that in the arm 
through his rump. 

Tchingal (Emu), (the dark space between the fore-legs of 
Centaurus and Crux), who pursues Bunya until he takes 
refuge in a tree, and who is afterwards killed by Berm-berm-gle. 

Bunya (Oppossum), (star in the head of Crux), who is pur- 
sued by Tchingal, and who, in his fright lays his spears at the 
foot of a tree and runs up it for safety. For such cowardice he 
became an oppossum. 

Tourtchinboionggerra (Cornua Berenices), a flock of small birds 
drinking rain water, which has lodged in a hollow in the fork 
of a tree. (Each star had a separate name, but, through the 
intercourse of the aborigines with the white people, the names 
are forgotten.) 

Kourt-chin (Magellan Clouds). — The larger cloud a male, and 
the lesser cloud a female Native Companion. 

Warring (Galaxy). — The smoke of the fires of the Nurrum- 
bunguttias. Another account is, that only a part of the Galaxy 
is the smoke of the fires of the Nurrumbunguttias, and that the 
other part is two Mindii, enormous snakes which made the 
Murray (Millee). 

Kulkunbulla (the Stars in the Belt and Scabbard of Orion). — 
A number of young men dancing. (A coroborree.) 

Larnankurrk (Pleiades), a group of young women playing to 

Gellarlec (Kose, or Eos Cockatoo (Aldebaran), an old man 
chanting, and beating time to Kulkunbulla and Larnankurrk. 

Warepil (Male Eagle) (Sirius), a chief of the Nurrumbung- 
uttias, and brother to war. 

Collowgullouric Warepil (Female Eagle) (Rigel), wife of 

140 On the Astronomy of the Aborigines. 

Won (Corona), a boomerang thrown by Totyarguil. 

Weetkurrk (Star in Bootes, west of Arcturus), daughter of 

War (Male Crow) (Canopus), the brother of Warepil, and the 
first to bring down fire from (tyrille) space, and give it to the 
aborigines, before which they were without fire. 

Cofiowgullouric War (large red star in Eober Carol, marked 
966) (Female Crow), wife of War. All the small stars around 
her are her children. 

Yerrerdetkurrk (Achernar). — Nalwinkurrk, or mother of 
Totyarguil's wives. The Nalwinkurrk never allows her son-in- 
law to see her. 

Otchocut (Dolphinus), Great Fish. 

Collenbitchick (a species of Ant) (Double Star in the head 
of Capricornus), uncle to Totyarguil, and the rescue? of his 
remains from the Bunyips. The double star is his fingers feeling 
for the bank of the river. 

Yurree (Castor), Wanjel (Pollux), two young men that pur- 
sue Purra and kill him at the commencement of the great heat, 
and Coonartoorung (Mirage) is the smoke of the fire by which 
they roast him. When their smoke is gone Weeit (Autumn) 

Purra (Kangaroo) (Capella), who is pursued and killed by 
Yurree and Wanjel. 

Unurgunite (a small star marked 5th Mag 22, between two 
larger ones in the body of Canis Major). . He fights Mityan and 
makes bim run away for having tried to induce one of Unur- 
gunite's wives to run away with him. The stars on either 
side of Unurgunite are his two wives ; that farthest from 
him is the object of Mityan's affections. 

Porkelongtoute (Shooting Star), which portends evil to those 
that have lost a front tooth, to avert which they stir the fire 
and cast about firebrands. 

Tourte (Star). 

Weeit (Autumn), the first season of the year. 

Myer (Winter), the second season. 

Gnallew (Spring), the third season. 

Cotchi (Summer), the fourth season. 

On Extensive Infusoria Deposits. 141 

Akt. XVII. — On Extensive Infusoria Deposits in the Mallee 
Scrub, near Swan Hill, on the Lower Murray River, in 
Victoria ; and, on the Presence of Fucoidae in Silurian 
Rocks, near Melbourne. By Wellliam Blandowski, Esq. 


[Read before the Institute, 11th November, 1857.] 

When passing Swan Hill, on my late excursion to the Lower 
Murray, Mr. Beveridge drew my attention to an extraordinary 
geological formation in the Mallee Scrub. He accompanied me 
in the middle of summer for about twenty or twenty-two 
miles, in a westerly direction from his residence. We travelled 
under a burning sun ; not a single drop of water was to be 
found on the whole journey, but only dense bushes of Eucalypti 
dimosse, with low sandy limestone ranges alternating with 
dried up grassy open patches of good land, sometimes of a few 
miles in extent, which relieved the weary minds of the riders. 
Now and then a Leipoa started from the dense brushes, or a 
lizard from the sandy places, but not a single kangaroo inter- 
rupted the monotony of the scene: The rapidity with which we 
rode compelled us to keep a sharp look-out for all branches and 
crooked stems of the Mallee Scrub, to avoid serious accidents. 
We, nevertheless, arrived sooner at our destination than I had 

Here, low dry channels wound their course to the N\W. for 
an apparently indefinite distance, through a dreary-looking 
country, in which scarcely any vegetation covered the sterile" 
slightly undulating ground. Suddenly our horses were plunging 
through a brownish black crust into a pale yellow mass of flour- 
like mineral. Clouds of dust surrounded horses and riders, 
leaving a deep track behind along their route, similar to that 
we should have made on crossing a slightly frozen shallow 
lagoon. Every step of our horses formed a separate mark on 
the ground. I examined the mass under our feet. I dug with 
my hands a deep hole and tied up about twenty pounds of it in 
my pocket handkerchief, and sent a bagful as a specimen for our 
National Museum, which was delivered some time ago to that 
Institution, and numbered 1172. 

I recognised in this flour-like, fine powdered earthy mass of a 
pale yellow uniform colour, the well-known " Kieselguhr" or 
" Bergmehl," of the German mineralogists ; but, not having a 



On Extensive Infusoria Deposits in the 

powerful glass with me, I postponed a closer examination of it 
until a short time ago. The min eral, loose in itself, is like a 
kind of flour, and forms an extensive belt of many miles in 
length by a width of from one quarter to one mile, and a depth 
of many feet ; soft, and a little soapy to the touch ; is not 
affected by acids ; and, when exposed with soda to the blow- 
pipe, it rapidly moves on the surface of the soda pearl, 
suddenly dissolves and unites with it forming a kind of glass. 
Under a magnifying lens of 350 diameters, this powder has the 
appearance of elongated flat bodies, ornamented with triangular 
spurs irregularly projecting in every direction. (Vide fig. 1.) 
Some specimens only have a rugged appearance on both 
sides (vide fig. 2), and not unfrequently small round bodies with 
a spot in the centre. (Vide fig. 3.) This is all that I could 

Fig. 1 Fig. tb 

Ficj.U Fig 5 Fig- 


Mr. Poord, chemist in Mr. Clarke's Assay Office, in Eliza- 
beth-street, has given me his aid in these examinations ; and, as 
he had a specimen of a similar mineral, forwarded to him by a 
dioger at Albury, we compared his sample specimen with 
mine ; but the forms exhibited by it were without the pyra- 
midical triangular spurs (vide fig. 4), and only slightly rugged 
on the outer margin of the body of the Infusorium. In this 
inner part I observed on each side two lines forming, as it were, 
a channel longitudinally through the body of these little 

Professor Ehrenberg's work on the Infusoria has just 
arrived at the public library, and at page 191, sec. 254, you 
will see Eunolia granulata (vide fig. 6) very nearly identical with 

Mallee Scrub, Loiver Murray River. 143 

the specimen obtained near Albury and belonging to Eunotia 
or Eunotie genus (Prachtshiffchen). It is found in the moors of 
Germany at Franzensbad but not alive, in a fossil state at 
Santafiora, and under similar circumstances to those in the 
Mallee Scrub. 

Ehrenberg says, that these Eunolia Infusoria are distinguished 
by having elongated bodies with independent movements or by 
single or double bodies, having single, double, or more shells of 
a prismoid shape, which seldom form more than two or four 
joined chains, haying four openings or two on each side ; on the 
neutral side flat, on the dorsal side convex, and very often 
prettily indented 

There are three of these families alive, and ten fossil speci- 
mens have been found since 1837, when this genus was first 
discovered in Siberia. 

The specimen obtained by me in the Mallee Scrub will surely 
interest men of science like Professor Ehrenberg, as being im- 
bedded in our Australian Upper Tertiary formation and forming 
another connecting link in that chain of strata which I had the 
honor to delineate hi my 2nd Eeport to you for 1854, and 
published in the Transactions of the Institute for 1857, page 32, 
Nos. 1, 2 and 3. I therefore beg to communicate through you to 
the scientific world these observations as one of those small 
results of my investigations of this year in our desert, particularly 
as Mr. Foord believes they arise from stagnant pools in which a 
great mass of the green confervaceae is formed, and that if the 
latter are carefully dried, burnt and the ashes exposed to view 
under a powerful glass ; similar siliceous forms would be 
seen. Dr. Sconce and I have made experiments which 
showed us similar bodies, but after consulting Lindley's Vege- 
table Kingdom, I cannot agree with Mr. Foord's hypothesis as 
applicable to the case in question. The result of my inquiries 
has convinced me that such an enormous mass of siliceous mole- 
cules could not have been aggregated as the result of the igneous 
destruction of confervae. First, because they contain so small 
an amount of silica ; and second, because the ashes of burnt 
or desiccated confervoid growth would have been dispersed by 
the winds. The substance I am describing contains a large 
quantity of silica, and the boundaries of the mass are compara- 
tively defined. 

The great importance of such a geological phenomenon is 
evident. I believe that organic life has alone caused these enor- 
mous deposits of infusorial masses. Considering that only 30 
years have elapsed since minute scientific investigations into this 

144 On Extensive Infusoria Deposits in the 

department were made, and believing that little is known as 
to what share organic life has had in the alteration of the 
component parts our globe, I conceive that any addition to our 
stock of information on this subject must prove acceptable. 

The celebrated Professor Ehrenberg, of Berlin, whose pupil 
I am proud to have been, informs us that one cubic inch 
of such earth contains more than 41,000,000 of indivi- 
duals. One species is able to produce in a few hours one million 
of others, and. in four days some species produce 140 billions 
or 2 cubic feet of solid stone, taking an abstract view of the 
question. This animal moves at the rate of one mile in four 
weeks. One hundred millions weigh about one grain. 

They have the qualities of organised animal life. Eefiect upon 
the difference of size of such a minute creature as compared with 
planets, with the velocity and size of any of which bodies, what 
extremes of magnitude, what difference of purpose and function 
are presented for the reflection of the philosophic student of 
nature. On the one hand we have microscopic organisms so 
minute that although their size may be expressed in figures, the 
mind is unable to appreciate the minuteness of their structure ; 
"on the other hand, we have bodies whose proportions are so 
gigantic that the mind vainly endeavours to grasp the idea 
of their magnitude. But if you consider that each animal has 
its parasite, how much smaller must be the lice which prey and 
live upon these little infusoria, and which lice, says Ehrenberg, 
are again covered with still infinitely smaller parasites, which 
consider the backs of the lice their natural home. These 
little animalculse form here in our Mallee Scrub for hundreds of 
miles, a deposit of such an extent that we shall be compelled at 
some fure day to acknowledge its existence as a formation on 
our geological maps ! 

You will, I hope, forgive me if I connect another observation 
of mine with the present one, which if not distinctly appertain- 
ing to our subiect, is nevertheless connected with it, and which 
I have made only a few days ago in the Silurian strata near 
Melbourne, viz., the existence of fucoidae in a fossil state, of 
which I have the honour to lay before the members of this 
Institute a magnificent specimen. As it is exactly sixteen years 
ago since I discovered the first fucoidae in the limestone of 
Tarnowitz, in Upper Silesia, belonging to the Upper Trias 
Formation, and which are now in the possession of Professo 
Goeppert in Breslau, I feel assured you will excuse me if I 
inform you of a few details concerning them. 

Five years ago I found the first fossils in our Melbourne 

//& f&JZ 

fl/CO/Df£~ lr , p„/< ,„.//r,it mieaceoui .slaty sandstone of Me Camirian wZeurer ■Silt.''""' /erma//rs, 
Z>iaeoiveed aitAe B07X/V/C/K. G/mo£W$ JWetAowne. £,/ ftTJ3land>u <Ay. ./Vbi 


jfltill. o 

Mallee Scrub, Lower Murray River. 145 

Silurian micaceous sandy slate, which were unjustly claimed 
afterwards another person as his discovery, and whose un- 
founded claim to priority of observation have been improperly 
acknowledged even by the Government Geological Surveyor in 
his report. In justice to myself, I must claim publicly to have 
been the first observer of the same, and Mr. Edward Wilson 
and others, as well as the Government Geologist himself, I doubt 
not, will bear me out in this assertion. I had secured the first 
specimens found by me in the Police Paddock, and subsequently 
placed them in the Museum. One of them disappeared when 
that institution was under my charge, the other specimen must 
be there still 

The specimen of fucoidae here in question, (vide plate, natural 
size), I found in the quarry near the gates of the Botanical 
Gardens, in the same stone in which I detected in 1851 the 
fossils, drawing of which I have embodied in the transactions 
of our society for 1855, vide page 222, fig. 301 to 305. 

My attention was drawn to about a dozen flat stones, laid by 
order of our gallant Director of the Botanical Gardens, Dr. Mueller, 
in the dirt, to assist the ladies in crossing a muddy spot in the 
lower walk along the banks of the Yarra. Our learned friend 
did not, I suppose, anticipate the valuable fossil he thus caused 
to be exhibited. 

The fucoidae are plants of a very peculiar character, and so 
nearly allied to the Infusoria already above described, that it is 
only very recently that they have been considered plants and 
not animals. But still, they form the third division of the 
Algae, which are the transition forms between animal and vege- 
table life. They live principally in saltwater, and are not 
uncommonly divided into a kind of trunk and leaf-like blade. 
The form here in question may be the remarkable " Hydrogas- 
trum." Infusoria have neither bones nor muscles ; neither 
bloodvessels nor nerves, but still they have independent motion ; 
they feed by means of a mouth, and hunt for their prey. 

The confervae swim in water with great activity, have no 
mouth, and contain starch, which cannot be detected in infu- 
soria or other animals. Very conflicting opinions have been 
entertained by different naturalists on this subject, but the 
existence of Albuminous matter may be taken as a guide. Where- 
ever this is found we have good grounds for assigning the pro- 
duct to the vegetable kingdom, and where its non-existence can 
be shown to classify the product under the animal section. 

There exist plants which have cells independent of each 
other Hke Infusoria, or united into simple threads (confervae), 

146 Observations on the Saw Fish. 

and these are succeeded by others, in which the threads begin 
to collect into nets (Hydrodietgon), like the example before 

This simple plant shows no distinction between leaf and 
stem and is also destitute of flowers. The fucoidae characterize 
the lowest zone of animal life, that it is to say, where these 
plants are found, are also to be detected the animals at the 
lowest range of the Zoological kingdom. If you, therefore, 
take into consideration that the Graptolite, a kind of Zoophyte, 
exists in abundance near Keilor, you will not for a moment 
doubt that our strata belong to the oldest neptunic era of 
the world, and were deposited in the ancient marine beds 
which have been subsequently upheaved by internal volcanic 
action, forming here the cambrian or lowest silurian formation 
of Victoria* 

Art. XVIII. — Observations on the Saw Fish. 
By Thomas E. Rawlinsojst, Esq., C.E. 

[Read before the Institute, 11th November, 1857.] 

I beg to submit for the consideration of the members of this 
Institute a brief description of a saw-fish and young taken in the 
Port Phillip waters. 

This is no new discovery with which to startle you, and to 
the professed naturalist is perhaps no great novelty. Yet I 
have ventured to submit to you the few facts of which I have 
become possessed, in the hope, that such may be at least interest- 
ing to the many, and useful as a memorandum to the naturalist 
in his more abstruse and elaborate researches. 

The fish, which is the subject of this notice, is that generally 
known as the saw-fish, from the peculiar saw like snout with 
which the fish is armed Naturalists class it in the Ray family, 
although in external appearance it more nearly resembles the 
shark tribe. Some of the saw-fishes have been known to attain 
the length of from 12 to 15 feet. 

This specimen taken in Hobson's Bay was, however, only 3 feet 
6 inches in length from the end of the snout to the extreme end 
of its tail. Of this the snout occupied nine inches, being two and a 
half inches wide at the base, and tapering to one half inch in width 
at the extremity, whilst its thickness was inconsiderable. Along 

* Vide Transactions Philosophical Society, 1855, p. 228, " On the Primary 
Upheaval of the Land round Melbourne, &c." By this Author. 

Observations on the Saw Fish. 147 

each edge it was armed with tooth-lite spines, even in line, but 
irregular in length, varying from one-sixteenth to one-fourth of 
an inch. 

The pectoral fins, when extended, measured from tip to tip 
fourteen inches. 

Two tentacula projected from the underside of the snout, three 
inches in length, and equi-distant from the end. 

The mouth Chevron-shaped, and situated under the base of 
the snout. 

Upper and lower maxillaries armed with several rows of canine 
teeth, recurved towards the interior of the mouth. 

The nostrils one and a half inches forward of the mouth, and 
also situated on the underside of snout, — one and one-fourth inches 
apart, — the cochleated orifices oval, with curled process on outer 
free margin of openings. 

Gill openings, five in number, having a ventral aspect. 

Vent opening, situate between the posterior insertion of the 
ventral fins. 

There are pectoral and ventral fins, but no anal fin. Two 
dorsal fins (the first being situate over the vent), and a caudal 
fin of moderate size. 

Eyes large and oval, the greatest diameter being in the 
direction of the length of the fish. 

Spiracles situated close upon and posterior to the orbits. 

The shape slender, and tapering gradually to the tail. The 
cross section of the fish through the first dorsal being nearly a 
triangle with the apex rounded off, the underside of the fish 
being flat throughout. 

The general colour, light greyish brown on the back, and 
greyish white on the belly. The skin, as usual in members of 
the Bay and Shark families. 

The fins soft as usual. 

This fish was captured alive near to Gellibrand's Point in a 
net, and was immediately placed in a tub of water, where it 
lived for four hours. Before death it gradually ejected a 
large quantity of blood through its gill-openings. 

About ten minutes after the capture of the parent fish it 
parted with fifteen young and well-developed fish, each of which 
began to swim about feebly, immediately upon passing from 
the mother. 

The young fish were born with a vitellus attached to the 
abdomen, the generally assumed use of which, is to afford 
nourishment to the young animals until they have attained 
sufficient strength and vigour to provide for themselves. I 

148 An Historical Review of the 

have great pleasure in presenting to the members two specimens 
of the young for their Museum. 

I am indebted to my friend Mr. Ellery, for the present 
opportunity of presenting the Institute with specimens of 
the young, and also for the facts in connection with this 

Aet. XIX. — An Historical Review of the Explorations of 
Australia. By Dr. Ferdinand Mueller. 


[Read before the Institute, 25th November, 1857.] 

If additions to the geographical knowledge of the globe in 
every age and in every country elicit the deepest interest, how 
much greater claims have the exertions of our own explorers on 
the citizens of Australia. 

If a traveller's progress through a country, densely occupied by 
native races, domiciled and more or less advanced in industry, is 
still watched with pleasure or anxiety, even should he gain no 
space for widening the dominions of the Anglo-Saxon race, of 
how much more importance is any new information then on 
that country, which we adopt as our home, and which sup- 
ports, notwithstanding its almost equal size to that of Europe 
less inhabitants than many of the capitals of European states ? 
And if the wandering through the low and humid regions of an 
equinoctial zone, through regions little qualified for the lengthened 
exercise of our physical strength, still insures the interest of all, 
how much more deserves our enquiry into the nature of a 
country which is well adapted for the exercise of our labour, all 
the sympathy of a young and onstruggling nation ? 

Our desire to unveil the remaining unknown portions of 
Australia is not limited at this moment by demands on our 
patriotism or our progress alone ; its future exploration is 
likewise claimed by our humanity, and by our honour as a 

With the discovery of gold a new epoch commenced in our 
history ; and whilst in former days a wider occupation of pasture- 
ground was rendered by the increased transit distance to the 
coast, often hardly remunerative, we find now that the daily influx 
to our agricultural and mining popidation renders such exten- 
sion quite imperative. Again by CadeLVs enterprise, judiciously 

Exploration of Australia. 149 

encouraged by Sir Henry Young, the navigation of the Murray 
stream has been achieved, and has, by the facilities which it offers 
for a wider inland communication, conquered for settlement a 
tract of country previously all but unavailable. Deprived of many 
navigable streams of the interior, we may expect that also by a 
railroad system vitality will be diffused in later days through 
many of the dormant wastes of Australia. 

And lastly a noble zeal manifests itself all through this country 
for a renewed endeavour to dissipate the doubts in which the 
fate of Dr. Leichhardt's party has been involved for 
nearly ten years, and the early appeal of Captain 
Sturt, the venerable and the greatest of all Australian 
explorers, to search with equal ardour for the wanderer 
of the desert, as for the wanderer of the pole, raised a 
renewed echo in many a feeling heart. However faint the hope 
of finding any of Leichhardt's little band amongst the living, we 
would, responding to the call, redeem our debt at least to their 
memory. No one can more deeply deplore than myself, that it 
has not been the destiny of the last Australian explorer to gain 
any tidings of the missing party, although when crossing the 
country between East Australia and the north coast, our hope of 
learning of their fate was not less justified than ardent. 

But it would be needless to explain the necessity of unceasing 
labours for a final and complete exploration of Australia. Yet 
since it fell to my share to participate in the work of a former 
expedition, I thought the Institute in fostering these projects, 
might indulgently accept my own impressions, as to the best ac- 
complishment of such a task. 

In order to obtain a clearer view of what remains to be 
achieved yet by geographical research, a rapid glance will be 
needed over the respective labours of those great men, to whom 
not we alone, but the whole world of science is indebted for all 
we know at present of the nature of Australia. 

But as the question brought before the Institute has reference 
alone to inland exploration, I have excluded from this summary 
all that relates exclusively to maritime survey, moreover since 
an admirable memoir on the examination of our shores has been 
furnished in the ever valuable work of Flinders, to which the 
lucid notes of Count Strzelecki on King's and other navigator's 
labours, may serve as a supplement. 

To Mr. Oxley's early labours (in 1817), I can but briefly 
allude, containing only limited evidence for conclusion on the 
nature of the interior. He extended the geographical survey 
already in 1817 to the marshes of Macquarie and Lachlan, to 

150 An Historical Review of the 

the Castlereagh, and to the tributaries of the Darling as well as 
over a great extent of the mountain ranges of New South "Wales ; 
Mount Seaview, being the loftiest oi those which he examined, 
attaining an elevation of 6000 feet. 

Our acquaintance, however, with the Lachlan and Macquarie 
Rivers, dates from an earlier period, and we are indebted to Mr. 
Evans for the first account of them. Had Mr. Oxley been able 
to extend his journey for one day farther to the south-west, the 
Murrumbidgee, and probably with it the Murray, would have 
been discovered. 

Mr. Allan Cunningham was the first who reached the 
sources of the Darling from Liverpool-plains, and had the first 
glimpse of the splendid pastoral country, now generally known 
as Darling Downs. The highest elevation examined by bim is 
Mount Lindsay, in the vicinity of Moreton Bay (5700 feet). 

Messrs. Hume and Hovell performed the first overland 
journey from New South Wales to Port Phillip, determining 
thereby the western limits of the Alps and crossing all the 
rivers rising on the western side of those gigantic mountains. 

Captain Sturt, accompanied by Mr. Hume, discovered in 
1829 the Darling, a river of such great importance as regards 
the wide extent of its tributaries. Where it was struck (in 
lat. 30° S.) it proved saline. The discovery of the Bogan (or 
New Year's Creek), of Oxley's table land and other features 
of the interior, resulted likewise from this expedition. 

Major, afterwards Sir Thomas Mitchell, in three expeditions, 
undertaken in 1831-32, 1835 and 1836, added to our infor- 
mation on the Darling and many of its tributaries, discovered 
Mount Hope, the Loddon, the Grampians, the Wimmera, the 
Glenelg Eiver, the Pyrenees, Hopkins River, Campaspe, Mount 
Macedon, Fuller's Range ; indeed the greatest inland portion of 
our colony. But our enterprising citizens Messrs. Henty, were 
the harbingers of colonisation on these shores. Bearings were 
likewise obtained by Sir Thomas Mitchell to some prominent 
points on the western outskirts of our Alps, for instance, to 
Mount Buller and to Mount Aberdeen. 

The exertions of this celebrated man, which tended so ma- 
terially to our early welfare, have not been, we must confess, 
sufficiently appreciated by this colony. 

Lieut, (now Sir George) Grey, Governor of South Africa, 
landed towards the end of 1837, at Hanover Bay, whence he 
discovered and explored to some extent the Glenelg River. It 
is a stream of some importance, probably navigable near its 
mouth, winding either through sandstone table land, or a fine 

Explorations of Australia. 151 

basaltic country, highly adapted for cattle runs, not only on 
account of its luxuriant meadows, but also as being within 
reach of three harbours, and enjoying likewise a climate quite 
salubrious. He also examined the elevated watershed between 
the Glenelg and Prince Regent's River, (the latter previously 
revealed by the late Admiral King), and the occurrence of 
a species of Araucaria (probably distinct from any other kind), 
could not fail to attract the attention of such a keen observer 
as Captain Grey. His and Lushington's journey terminated 
in a cheerless sandstone country, similar to that in which most 
of the rivers rise in North Australia. 

He landed in February, 1839, in Shark's Bay, with whale- 
boats only, discovered the Gascoigne, a river, perhaps already 
known to Fleming, who visited the same locality in 1667. 
The alluvium in the neighbourhood of that river was fertile, 
and fresh water lagoons existed in undulating ground near the 
Gascoigne. This observation will be valued, when we learn, 
that south of Shark's Bay water can only be obtained as far as 
known, at a distance of forty miles from a native well. Rising 
land however, was nowhere observed, to cheer the travellers 
on towards the east. His party's return to the settlements of 
Western Australia was effected by a foot journey from Gan- 
theaume Bay, attended with the severest hardships and priva- 
tions, under which, one of the bravest of their companions 

To this harrassmg journey we owe also our first knowledge 
of the Eiver Murchison, which forms at present the most 
northern limit of the colonisation of western Australia. Its 
upper course is yet unknown, and may, according to Mr. 
Gregory's opinion, afford yet, in a favourable season the means 
for examining the north-western interior of that colony, to our 
knowledge of which district the last labours of Mr. Austin have 
added also in a slight degree. 

Instead, however, of detailing the results of Captain Grey's 
labours south of Shark's Bay, I insert gladly a comprehensive 
unpublished account of the physical geography of Western 
Australia, from the pen of my excellent and generous com- 
mander in North Australia, to whom also geography is in- 
debted for the greatest amount of inland discovery in South 
West Australia. 

" The general character of the known portion of Western 
Australia is that of a moderately elevated tableland, rising 
about 1200 or 1400 feet above the sea ; the rocks are almost 
wholy granite, covered with a thin stratum of sandstone, the 
surface of which, by its decomposition produces barren sandy 

152 An Historical Review of the 

soil, which is one of the causes of the scrubby vegetation and 
small development of grasses. The edge only of this table 
land is drained by the rivers, the water in the interior forming 
shallow lakes of saltwater during the rainy seasons, some few 
of which overflow into the rivers, but others have no apparent 
outlet, while the small quantity of rain which falls in the 
interior is quite insufficient to balance the evaporation, which 
is excessive in consequence of the extreme dryness of the air." 

" On the western coast there is a narrow strip of lower 
land of sandstone formation which lies between the table 
land and the sea level, in lat. 33°, and rises gradually as it 
goes north to lat. 28°, where it is 800 or 900 feet above the 
sea, and nearly hides the escarpment of the interior table land. 
It is near this point that granite has protruded, and it is in 
this rock that the mines of lead and copper exist* ; the rock 
being intersected by numerous metallic veins, some doubt- 
less, of great value, while the granite of the interior table land 
is almost destitute of mineral deposits." (See Plate.) 

" Coal has only been found in the valleys of the rivers at 
the base of the table land, along which it probably extends for 
a great distance, but is covered by sandstones of *a later period. 

" Along the coast from Sharks Bay, nearly to Cape Leeuwin, 
there is a strip of limestone of recent formation. This has not 
been deposited in water but results from the constant accu- 
mulation of sand and broken shells which have been drifted 
from the sea beach by the force of the wind, and in course 
of time become indurated by the lime of the shells cementing 
the sand together, and forming a coarse rock, without any 
regular stratification and nearly destitute of fossils, this rock is 
still in course of formation, and may be seen in every stage of 
progress from distinct sand to compact limestone." 

" The only hills of any elevation, are some small detached 
ranges of sandstone, which has altered so much that its age 
cannot be exactly determined, but either belongs to the car- 
boniferous series, or is of older date. This rock forms hills 
near King George's Sound, and along the coast near Mount 
Barren, and rises to 3000 feet with rugged summits, which do 
not appear to have been covered by the ocean at the period 
when the sandstones, overlying the coal formation were de- 
posited, and on their slopes above the limits of the sandstones 
which rest horisontally around them, long lines of waterworn 
boulders of rock present the appearance of sea beach, though 
now nearly 500 feet above the ocean." 

* These mines were disc6vered by Mr. Gregory. 




* BY 


^Acaciet <zh</ Cypt ess Scrub 

^.JSuceclyftius, Acacra, Cypr ?ss Melaleuca, and 
~ "i Casuarbta, iScrub 

Explorations of Australia. 153 

" As every other part of Australia which I have yet examined 
shews distinct evidence of having been submerged at the period 
when these beaches were formed, it would be highly interesting 
to investigate, how far the remarkable prevalence of forms pecu- 
liarly Australian, in the flora of this portion of the continent 
may be connected with the fact of these hills having been 
islands during the period when the inundation of the greater 
portion of Australia must have destroyed the ancient vegetation 
of the country." 

The flora of the South West Australia is more replete with 
quite endemic forms than that of any other portion of the globe, 
and its vegetation is more universally restricted to locality than 
that of any country hitherto examined. This fact quite un- 
important as it may appear, deserves a serious consideration in 
any theory on the interior. The question arises, is it likely that 
many mountains exist eastward of and similar to those of West 
Australia. (See Plate.) 

If so I think the plants destroyed by any great deluge, would 
have re-descended from such elevations, allotting thus a wider 
range to the species than they are known to possess. 

To Count Strzelecki is due the credit of having ascended 
and measured for the first time (in 1840) many of the principal 
north east mountains of our Alps. As his account of some of 
the elevations stands in discrepancy to those measurements in- 
stituted in 1852 by the Eev. Mr. Clark, I draw attention to the 
following scale of Alpine heights kindly furnished for this 
paper by the rev. gentleman. Mount Kosciusko 7308', second 
height of the Munyang Mountains 7064', Rams Head 6838', 
Bagong mountains at the sources of the Tumut River 6763', 
Bald Hill at the head of the Gungarlin River (tributary of the 
Snowy River) 5337', Marragurall or Mount Murray (head of 
the Murrumbidgee) 6987' Tollula (head of the Murrumbidgee) 
6934', Mount Gungarlin (Head of the Gungarlin River) 5337', 
Crakenback Hill 4697'. Other alpine mountains, near the 
sources of the Hastings have been measured by a member of 
this Institute, Mr. Clement Hodgkinson. Accompanied by Messrs. 
Riley and Macarthur, the Count completed the discovery of Gipps 
Land, into which my enterprising friend Mr. Angus M'Millan had 
led the way before. The whole of the watercourses east and north 
of the LaTrobe River had been crossed and named by M'Millan 
(in his advance to the coast from Lake Omeo in search of a 
southern harbour, whilst the first overland journey was accom- 
plished by Strzelecki from Gipps Land into Western Port, and this 
not without the severest trials, the party abandoning their horses 

154 An Historical Review of the 

three weeks previous to their arrival at Western Port, hardly able 
to force their way on foot through extensive and almost impenetra- 
table forests, intersected by swamps, creeks, and morasses. The 
exertions of Capt.Wickham and Stokes, the commanders of H. M.S. 
the Beagle between 1837 and 1843, by which manifold additions 
were gained to inland discoveries are praiseworthy in a high 
degree, particularly when we recollect that in the engagements for 
maritime surveys, the means for land exploration can be but 
limited in the extreme. The finest stream of tropical Australia, 
justly bearing a royal name, was then discovered. But since"" I 
contemplate to lay the principal results of the last North Austra- 
lian expedition, to which I was attached, in a special paper before 
the institute, I will not dwell on this occasion on the import- 
ance of that discovery. The Adelaide river, winding through a 
level country, and doubtless rising in the same low table land 
as the South Alligator Biver, was found to be navigable upwards 
of fifty miles, and into fresh, offering thus to the fine pastures of 
Arnheim's Land, a favourable access. The tall Bamboo imparts 
to this river quite the aspect of an Indian stream. The discovery 
of the Albert, the Flinders and the FitzBoy Bivers resulted from 
the same expedition. Adansonia reaches its western limits on the 

In 1840 an expedition was fitted out conjointly by the 
Government and the colonists of S*outh Australia for the explo- 
ration of the northern interior of that colony, under the 
command of the talented Mr. Eyre, now Governor in West India, 
who in the year previous had gained the highest reputation as 
an explorer by his discovery of Lake Torrens, Mount Bemark- 
able, and many other mountains and several of the rivers of 
South Australia ; Mount Eyre forming the northern limit of his 
researches in 1839. 

No one can read the lucid account of this journey without 
admiring his skill, his perseverance and courage, or without 
sympathising with his sufferings and bitter disappointments. 
Inhospitable tracts of country along the Flinder's Banges were 
reconnoitered by Mr. Eyre, merely accompanied by a native 
boy, on one occasion 120 miles ahead of his party. A desperate 
push over a difficult country was necessary on more than one 
occasion to reach water, fifty miles to and fro to be travelled 
without a refreshing drink to either animals or men, and this at 
a season of the year (August), when it would have been 
abundantly expected. Travelling partially by night alone 
rendered it possible for him to regain the camp of his party. 
Although in the subsequent advance of the squatters permanent 

Explorations of Australia. 155 

watering places were discovered, it does not detract from the 
merits of the first and less fortunate explorer, who led the way 
into these regions. 

In the months of June hardly any water existed on the 
western side of Flinders Kange. 

He discovered in this tour, Mount Serle, one of the highest 
mountains in the northern tracts of that colony, rising to 
about 3000\ afterwards more specially examined by Mr. 
Sinnett, of this city. From the summit of that mountain the 
view to the N. and N.W. presented an almost unbroken 
horizon, whilst Mr. Eyre's progress to the north was utterly 
impeded by the circular expansion of Lake Torrens, a vast 
salt morass, the water where examined, proving perfect 
brime. The Mundy, the Burr, and the Frome Rivers were dis- 
covered, the water proved, however, in the lower portion of 
the Frome, to be perfectly saline, an observation confirmed 
afterwards also by Mr. Sinnett; and, at Mount Distance the 
springs even were salt ; brime springs having been found also 
by Captain Sturt previously in the Darling, in nearly the 
same latitude. 

Undaunted by endless embarassment and unparalleled hard- 
ships, Mr. Eyre did not entirely abandon his task, but cross- 
ing the country to Baxters Range (a chain composed of 
Conglomerate), he opened for the first time the overland com- 
munication from the head of Spencers Gulf to the settlements 
of Port Lincoln, passing a sandy scrub-tract with a few 
granitic hills. He rejoined his small party, which on his former 
track of discovery along the almost waterless naked granitic 
ridges of Gawler Range, had reached Streaky Bay. Salt lakes, 
saline flats, and scrub, alternating with sandy ridges, completed 
also here the type of the genuine Australian desert, neither 
watercourses nor timber existing even under the high rocky 
declivities of Gawler Range. 

The pages of Mr. Eyre's journal afterwards relate even 
severer trials of his endurance and sufferings. Pushing on 
often through dense scrubs he forced, by sinking wells in the 
loose sand, his way to the great bight, but when endeavouring 
to round that dreadful portion of the country, the limestone 
rocks prevented him from obtaining water by digging. For 
twenty-four days he in vain endeavoured to reach the head of 
the bight, being obliged after reaching it within twelve miles 
to abandon three horses his dray and provisions, and toilino- 
unsuccessfully for seven days subsequent to their discovery. 

It must, however, not be forgotten, that the season was un- 
favourable for his enterprise. Open grass plains were isolated 

156 An Historical Review of the 

and rare, the surface rock being invariably an oolitic lime- 
stone. Mountains were nowhere seen for encouraging the 
traveller to deviate from his coast route inland, not even 
trees were observed. Permanent surface water was totally 
absent around the bight, and the natives denied also its exis- 
tence inland. From the head of the bight, westward for 300 
miles, water was only obtained on one locality in the sand- 
ridges, the universal extent of the limestone formation frus- 
trating every attempt of getting it by digging. 

The dew-fall, together with humidity of the sea air, alone 
saved the remainder of Mr. Eyre's sheep and horses from 

Our surprise and sympathy are equally raised, when we 
learn that these poor animals could have travelled six and 
seven days, over a generally scrubby country, in long stages, 
perfectly deprived of water. Away from the humid coast air 
this would have been an imposibility. I will not detain the 
Assembly with relating all the horrors attending the murder 
of Mr. Eyre's companion, further than observing how careful 
a traveller should be in placing implicit reliance in the 
attachment of natives, however kindly treated, to their masters. 
But let us sufficiently value the evidence of Mr. Eyre in our 
theories of the Australian interior, when he establishes the 
startling fact, that from Eussell Range, discovered on this 
occasion to the termination of Spencers Gulf, a coast line of 
more than 800 miles, not a single river enters the ocean, a 
fact without parallel in any part of the globe. 

The first journey of Dr. Leichhardt performed in 1844 and 
1845 will ever be recorded as a triumphantly successful exploit, 
performed by slender means. The line of his wanderings extends 
over 3000 miles of unexplored country, and for the first time a 
land journey from the eastern settlements of this country to the 
extremity of the north coast was prosperously accomplished. 

We learned from Leichhardt that in about lat. 18° S. the divi- 
sion takes place between the waters of the Gulf Carpen- 
taria and those of the east coast. We learnt from 
him the unexpected existence of numerous, although 
insignificant rivers falling into the Gulf of Carpentaria. 
We learnt from him the extensive fertility of Arnheim's 
land, and of • eastern tropical Australia and that a salu- 
brious climate pervades the greater part of Northern Australia. 
The life of Mr. Gilbert, a meritorious contributor to the works of 
Gould, was sacrificed in the journey in which he shared for pur- 
suing his favourite science. 

The expedition performed in 1846 by the late Sir Thomas 

Explorations of Australia. 157 

Mitchell was also replete with great results, and may be regarded 
like that of Sturt as very conclusive of the probable nature of 
Central Australia. 

The Darling tributaries were further examined and in about 25° 
S. high ranges discovered, from whence the waters are flowing 
to the Burdekin, towards Lake Torrens, to the Darling. 
Fine grazing districts stretch along many of these watercourses. 
Mr. Kennedy traced subsequently the J Barcoo or Victoria Biver 
discovered by Sir Thomas Mitchell, found it identical with 
Cooper's Creek and traced likewise the Warrego until it seemed to 
be lost in the desert. Between the Warrego and Calgoa he 
encountered a waterless country for 80 miles. 

The Barcoo is an excellent example of the nature of the 
generality of the Australian desert rivers. From a fine water- 
course with large pools it spreads, as soon as it leaves the 
suddenly terminating sandstone ridges, into countless channels over 
a depressed country devoid of vegetation, until with reappearance 
of hills, the drainage once more collects in channels retaining 
permanent water. 

In the subsequent year Dr. Leichhardt, accompanied by Mr. 
Bunce, connected his former route as far as Peak Banges with 
some of the northerly positions gained by Sir Thomas Mitchell. 

During the years 1844, 1845, and 1846, the discoverer of the 
Murray River again took the field for geographical research under 
the auspices of the British Government. Assisted by Messrs. 
Poole and Brown, he found on his way to central Australia the 
Barrier Banges, a chain of low mountains, formerly, perhaps, an 
island in the ocean. Favoured by rainshowers Captain Sturt's 
officers reached the east wing of Lake Torrens. Mount Lyall, 
the highest in the eastern vicinity of Lake Torrens, measuring 
2000' was examined, and the Grey Ranges, (flat topped mountains 
denuded of forest vegetation, in which it seems slate rocks pre- 
dominated), emanating from a very depressed desert, became also 
known. The thermometer rose in December to 131° Fah. in the 
shade, and to 154° under direct exposure to the sun-rays. Captain 
Sturt proved here the cessation of high land to the east and north- 
east within a considerable distance. 

Deprived of water all around, beyond the friendly glen, to 
which he was led by Providence, he found himself imprisoned 
for many months at a solitary pool of Frome Creek, on the 
western side of Grey-range, lat. 29° S., until the brief rainy 
season reappeared, surrounded " by one of the most gloomy 
regions that men ever traversed, the stillness of- death reign- 
ing around them." Captain Sturt further examined the N, E. 


158 An Historical Review of the 

part of Lake Torrens, and his companion Mr. Browne, in a 

letter to myself, affirms again after the late discovery of fresh 
water in the Torrens Basin, that it was where they tasted it in- 
disputably salt. Stmt's brave associate, Mr. Poole, fell on 
this lonely spot a victim of the scurvy. At last released by 
rain, Captain Sturt and Mr. Brown proceeded in August 1845, 
to the N.W., and encountered all the singular phenomena 
of the desert ; low hills raised to gigantic mountains by refrac- 
tion, the deceptive mirage, the extraordinary changes of the tem- 
perature from burning heat at day time to freezing cold at night. 
He proved by a gallant dash into the interior, worthy to have been 
crowned with an equally brilliant success, the non-existence of 
high ranges north of Lake Torrens for at least 300 miles, traver- 
sing nothing but a seemingly endless desert, which in its more 
depressed places appeared bike a dry recess of the sea. From 
sand ridges, like the waves of the ocean in endless succession, 
interspersed with salt lakes, he returned from his most northern 
position, within one degree of the tropics, two long days journey 
away from the last water, without any prospect of finding it by 
further advance. 

Still the desert with all its horrors could not deter the intrepid 
Sturt from a new attempt of reaching the centre of the conti- 
nent. Travelling in October, somewhat to the eastward of his 
last track, he was fortunate enough to intersect the channels 
which radiate from Cooper's Creek, a delightful oasis in the 
desert, formed by the drainage of the country declining to the 
south-west. This watercourse has bye-channels, like most of 
the North Australian Bivers, and is likewise lined with arbore- 
scent melaleucas. Some of the pools were salt. Beyond it only 
saltlakes and arid country occurred, the shallow stony desert 
intercepting his progress. "From the last sandhill his eye 
wandered hopelessly for some bright object on which to rest : 
the appearance of the desert was that of an immense sea beach." 
Returning along his track guided by a lamp at night, he accom- 
plished his journey back to Cooper's Creek (92 miles), receiving 
relief of thirst only by one of his wells ; had this failed to supply 
the element of life, the destruction of the horses would have also 
sealed the dreadful fate of the explorers. 

Captain Sturt is of opinion that the fall of the sub-tropical inte- 
rior is to the westward, and that large tracts of it are occasionally 
inundated, bringing fish to the isolated parts of such waters as 
O'Halloran Creek. Disappointed in all his hopes, prostrated by 
scurvy, and seemingly cut off again by the dryness of the season 
from his retreat to the Darling, a distance of 270 miles ; it 

Explorations of Australia. 159 

required the fortitude of a Sturt to bear up with his fate. How- 
ever, by a skilful plan and by the most praiseworthy perseverance 
of his companions, the retreat was effected in safety, the country 
being previously reconnoitered for water by Mr. Browne as far 
as Flood's Creek, a then waterless distance of 118 miles. A supply 
for men and animals was carried part of the way in hides, and the 
retreat was achieved in two days and three nights. On two 
occasions again the heat exceeded 130° in the shade, and 
approached to 160° in the sun. The water evaporated in the 
creeks at the rate of 1 inch per day. 

The exploration of Cape York peninsula in 1848, under Mr. 
Kennedy, although not fruitful in important results, stands on 
record as one of the most dreadful in the annals of geography, 
ending, almost at the point of its accomplishment, in the loss of 
one of the most talented and philanthropic explorers of which 
Australia can boast, and in the consequent almost total destruction 
of his party. 

Mr. Kennedy landed in Rockinham Bay ; but, such was the 
difficulty of forcing his way through the jungles and morasses, and 
such the unhealthiness of the climate, that, after two months' 
struggling with endless impediments, he found himself yet within 
thirty miles of his landing-placa At last he succeeded in crossing 
the coast swamps and the scrubby dividing range, and in the pro- 
gress of his journey northward he was rewarded with the discovery 
of the main branch of the Mitchell River, and many of its 

Leaving the granitic ridges behind him, he followed the waters 
of the Kennedy River to Princess Charlotte Bay. 

At the depot at Weymouth Bay, only two of his followers 
survived their sufferings, the rest sinking under illness and 

The young and accomplished leader fell under the spears of 
the savages, near Port Albany, and his faithful native alone 
reached the vessel awaiting them at Albany Island. Two of 
the party, left behind to attend to a dying man, were also never 
rescued, whilst only two of those encamped at Weymouth Bay 
were saved when on the brink of death. 

During part of the years 1848 and 1849, Lieutenant Roe, 
Surveyor-General of West Australia, accompanied by Messrs. 
H. Gregory and Ritly, extended his survey as far as Russell 
Range, a low granitic chain, on the west point of the Australian 
Bight, many tracts of Western Australia having been opened, 
also by Mr. Roe's labours in former years. Brewer Range and 
Dundas Hills were the northernmost points attained, and coal 

160 An Historical Review of the 

was discovered on the Fitzgerald River. The grassy country 
soon failed him, after leaving Cape* Riche, and a barren scrub 
land with saltlakes took its place. The view from Fitzgerald 
Peak (1000' above the plains), presented a vast sea of dark 
scrub, intersected by broad belts of salt lakes and samphire 
marshes, winding through a country almost level. Between 
Fitzgerald Peak and Mount Eitly only a rain shower saved the 
party from destruction. On several occasions water was col- 
lected from bushes after dew, an expedient to which Mr. 
Gregory likewise repeatedly resorted, in his West Australian 
travels, and which is effected best by the means of drawing 
blankets over the bushes loaded with dew. The whole northern 
horizon from his last position was perfectly unbroken. 

The expedition of Mr. Gregory (1855-1856), was attained 
in its beginning with so many disasters, that a less energetic 
and experienced leader would have failed, perhaps, to extricate 
himself from his difficulties. The transport vessel carried by 
the tide out of its course struck a coral reef near Point Keates, 
from which an escape was effected only after the lapse of seven 
days, and extreme suffering of the horses, arising from the ob- 
lique position of the vessel. Pressed also by this unfortunate 
delay for want of water, and having lost the guidance of our 
schooner in a dark night, we were compelled to land the horses 
at Point Pearce, indeed under those gloomy rocks, from which 
Captain Stokes was so successfully assailed by the savages. 
Fresh water was at last found after a long search over the 
dreary sandstone country. Having recruited our horses as far 
as circumstances would permit, we crossed in about three weeks, 
he country between our landing place and the Victoria River, on 
which tour also, the survey of the Fitzmaurice river, a romantic 
stream, became greatly extended. 

The small schooner, sent to co-operate with the exploring 
party, was wrecked on its voyage up the Victoria River, a mis- 
fortune which shortened the North Australian exploration con- 
siderably, not only by the loss of a vast quantity of provisions, ' 
but also in rendering it unlikely, even after a superficial 
repair of the vessel at our camp, to receive afterwards any 
aid in the exploration of the country around the Gulf of Car- 
pentaria, from whence alone by the re-establishment of a fixed 
camp the exploration could have been extended to Central 

Mr. Gregory continued his survey in November and De- 
cember, 1855, along the upper part of the Victoria River, and 
over the adjacent country, the climate and fertility of the country 

Explorations of Australia. 161 

improving with our advance inland. Indeed, a luxuriant pas- 
toral country was discovered, the sandstone table land having 
to a great extent receded before ridges and plains of basaltic 

The tropical rain season set in under thunder showers in 
November, advanced to regular daily rains in December, but 
ended in January. Thus, at the season desirable for inland 
travels, Mr. Gregory advanced with the whole of his horses to 
the fine grass land of the Upper Victoria Elver, forming on one 
of its eastern tributaries a depot in about lat. 17° S., from 
whence a lightly equipped party of four, in which I had the 
honour to be included, traced the river to its sources in lat. 
18° 12' S. L. and 130° 39' E. L. 

With a desire of advancing in a south-easterly direction into 
Central Australia, we crossed the dividing table land, from 
whence the country gradually sinks towards the interior and 
the coasts, its elevation, however, on the points of culmination 
rarely exceeding 1200 to 1400'. The only watercourse which was 
discovered in this direction, and which bears now the name of 
my venerable patron, Sir WilHam Hooker, was found to fade 
after a short course in the all-absorbing desert, notwithstanding 
our arrival on its banks at the most favourable season. From 
hence, on a westerly course, Mr. Gregory reached, not without 
difficulties, an inland water-course, formed by the drainage of a 
wide, and for the greater part fertile valley of the low 
sandstone table land, the valley sloping almost imperceptibly 
towards the interior. But since, neither the regular tropical 
rain showers, nor those of the southern season reach to this 
latitude, occasional rain-clouds from either direction being 
almost constantly dissolved by the dryness of the atmosphere, 
it will not be surprising that along this faint and frequently 
obliterated watercourse, distinguished by Mr. Gregory as 
Sturt's Creek, but few localities can be relied on for per- 
manency of water ; and we observed lastly, the drainage when 
forced through saline flats converted into brine. 

It may suffice to say, that we noticed here the same features 
of the desert, so vividly described by all its former explorers. 

The ferruginous drift sand, which extended along the lower 
part of Sturt's Creek, and surrounded the large, and at the 
time of our visit, waterless salt lake on its termination, 
stretched in long regular waves east and west. Thus termi- 
nated our journey towards Central Australia, in lat. 20° 20' 
S. L., and 127° 35' E. L., at an elevation of 900' above sea level. 
No watercourses could be discovered east, south or west of 

162 An Historical Review of the 

termination Lake ; no ranges to cheer us further on in our 
difficult path, a country of unbroken barrenness before us. 

The distance between Mr. Gregory's furthest point and the 
Great Bight was nearly 800 miles ; to the Fitzroy River 300 
miles ; to the entrance of the Victoria Eiver 400 miles ; to the 
settlements of Western Australia 950 miles ; and to Captain 
Sturt's farthest position inland 700 miles ; but we approached 
100 miles nearer to the last locality when at the termination of 
Hooker's Creek, and came to within 450 miles of it, when 
reaching afterwards the sources of the Nicholson. 

When leaving the Victoria River at the end of June, 1856, the 
dry season had so far advanced, that Mr. Gregory's plan of 
crossing Arnheims Land in an south-east direction became frus- 
trated ; and only by a deviation to the north did we gain the 
systems of water belonging to the Gulf of Carpentaria. Nor 
could we postpone this journey till a more favourable season, as 
many of the vessel's crew already suffered severely from scurvy. 
Mr. Gregory reached at the end of August the Albert River, on 
the southern extremity of the Gidf of Carpentaria, after having 
determined the length of all the rivers which enter that basin from 
S. W., none rising at a greater distance than 100 miles from the 
the coast, none except the Albert being supplied by springs, all 
conveying merely the drainage of a sterile sandstone-plateau, 
which, contiguous to the table land of the same formation oc- 
cupies such a vast extent of Australia, here, with an elevation 
more frequently below than above 1000'. The extensive fiat 
summits of this formation are true desert. 

Foreseeing the improbability of obtaining additional supplies 
from our ill-repaired schooner, Mr. Gregory continued his 
journey to the eastward, whilst water became exceedingly scarce, 
in the scrubby tract of country which we traversed 

At a more favourable season of the year a passage over 
the dividing table land from the sources of the Flinders or 
Leichhardt River towards the Burdekin, would in all likelihood, 
be practicable. But travelling south-east of the Gulf of Car- 
pentaria during the month of September, we gained the waters 
of the east coast only by a circuitous route into York's Penin- 
sula, crossing Newcastle-range, in which granitic and porphy- 
ritic rocks prevail from the sources of the Gilbert or perhaps 
Van Dieman River, the ranges still at their highest point not 
exceeding 2500'. Continuing our journey along the Burdekin 
to the Belyando, Mr. Gregory proved the identity of the latter 
river with the Suttor of Dr. Leichhardt. This journey from the 
N. W. coast into the East Australian settlements was performed 

Explorations of Australia. 163 

within five months, and with a judicious choice between the 
better parts of Mr. Gregory's and Dr. Leichhardt's route, and 
by avoiding many of the angles in both, a light party may 
cross the continent in a similar direction, now almost within 
four months. And gradually the distance between the fair 
grassy country of Eastern and North-western Australia will still 
be shortened by the extension of squatting stations on the 
Burdekin, where the open character of the country, its salu- 
brious climate, predominance of grass, the supply of water 
offered by an uninterrupted current of the river, and its con- 
stant proximity to the harbours of the east coast hold out the 
greatest facility for settlement. By the water, which the 
Burdekin receives from between 18° and 24° S., probably a 
stream will be formed navigable near the sea, by which 
the otherwise difficult transit across the jungle morasses of the 
coast would be obviated. This interesting and highly 
important question remains yet to be solved. 

In a scientific point of view the investigation of the high 
mountains scattered along the tropical east coast, such as Mount 
Abbott, Mount Dryander, Mount Hinchinbrooke (easy of access) 
Mount Bellenden Ker, rising to the elevation of 5000' would also 
be highly desirable. 

The enterprise evinced by South Australia has led in the 
course of this year, likewise to a few new geographical 

Mr. Swinden and his companions found Lake Torrens dis- 
connected with Spencer's Gulf, and a wider extension of the 
former to the westward. Low stony hills extend along the 
south-west flank of the lake. Water, seemingly permanent, was 

Mr. Hack proceeded from Streaky Bay to the Gawler Ranges 
and found some stretches of new pastoral land, although salt- 
bush country and scrub-land with salt-lakes, predominated. No 
hills of any size were observed in a north-westerly direction at 
least for fifty miles beyond the Gawler Ranges. Fair grassy 
country with springs was traversed at the eastern side of 
Gawler's and toward's Baxter's Range. 

I cannot with silence pass the last observations on Lake 
Torrens by Mr. Goyder. Not only because its waters where 
found to be fresh in the northern part of the lake, but also as a 
warning to travellers, — how little we can rely on the per- 
manency of water, which in an open desert country so rapidly 
evaporates ! 

Mr. Oakden was repelled in 1851 from his position on fresh- 

164 An Histwical Review of the 

water lakes, west of Lake Torrens, filled by thunder showers at 
the summer season, hut changing afterwards by evaporation, 
and by the solution of saline particles from the soil to 

From a little Island in Lake Torrens, Captain Freeling found 
the view desolate in the extreme, the shallow waters, low islands 
and mud extending around three parts of the horizon. 

From the evidence of the preceding pages, it will appear that 
any large unknown rivers, which would afford the means of 
penetrating far inland can no where be expected to exist, unless 
between the FitzRoy River in North-western Australia and 
Shark's Bay on the Western Coast. 

With the extent of the Murray and its mighty tributaries we 
are now fully acquainted. 

Mr. Eyre's researches proved the absence of large rivers from 
the head of Spencer's Gulf to Russell Range in West Australia, 
and Captain Sturt's observations are conclusive as regards the 
want of large watercourses to the northward of Lake Torrens, 
although the improbability of any great mountain drainage, 
entering the north-west side of that lake, remains yet to be 
proved. In eastern tropical Australia the ranges dividing coast 
and inland waters are nowhere very distant from the sea, the 
western slope of the inland ranges not leading extensive water 
currents into the interior, one instance excepted, that of the 

The length of the watercourses entering the southern part of 
the Gulf of Carpentaria has been determined, either positively, 
or may, as in the instance of the Leichhardt and Flinders Rivers 
be assumed from analogy not to exceed about 150 miles, whilst 
the absence of high mountains as far as 18° south throughout 
the whole interior precludes the possibility of any large river 
occurring in the southern vicinity of that parallel. The want 
also of large westerly tributaries to theBurdekin,to the Belyanda 
and Barcoo Rivers render the existence of high, extensive, and 
well-watered ranges in the unexplored portion of the eastern 
tropical interior quite unlikely. 

Still the Cape River and the Clarke River, both untravelled, 
may perhaps afford the means of penetrating with facility to one 
degree westward of the Burdekin. From the observations of 
Eyre, Sturt, Mitchell, Kennedy, and Gregory, we may infer, that 
the deserts observed by these explorers at such distant points 
of the interior, yet found to be of so great general resemblance, 
are contiguous. Cheerless as this prospect must appear to the 
labours of future travellers, it must not be forgotten, that not 

Explorations of Australia. 165 

only is the monotony of these immense desert-tracts broken occa- 
sionally by oases, destined in future to afford the means of 
communication throughout the continent, but that saline flats 
and isolated patches of grass land seem to be scattered every- 
where through the interior, and will, in many instances where 
water can be obtained permanently, become available as pasture 
when gradually inland settlements advance. The dip of the 
country directs the drainage, however scanty, often into defined 
channels, in which alluvial deposits and humidity combine, to 
produce invariably a luxuriant vegetation, but where on ac- 
count of excessive evaporation water is not always procurable. 
Of such oases Cooper's Creek, the Warrego Start's Creek, 
and Eyre's Creek, are instances. Nor is it to be doubted that 
some isolated ranges in the probably extensively depressed in- 
terior will offer a stronghold in years of drought. Centuries ' 
may elapse before the requirements of Australia will demand 
the occupation of many distant portions of our continent, but 
encouraging it must be for us to know that a day will arrive 
when settlements will be scattered, at least sparingly over its 
whole extent, and when a coast line of more than 5000 miles 
will not remain unoccupied. Tracts of pasture land, which in 
the early days of our colonisation were regarded as worthless, are 
sought for eagerly at the present day. Thus, every new 
stepping stone found in the wilderness will more extend the 
path of civilisation, and almost every discovery of permanent 
waters will lead to the establishment of fixed homes. 

But to achieve this progress, we shoidd avail ourselves judi- 
ciously of the experience gained by former explorations, and 
should select with care what would appear the most promising 
field for future operations. The main questions which geo- 
graphy requires us yet to solve, are to determine the length and 
extent of the southern fall of waters, descending from the table 
land around the Gulf of Carpentaria. It will, in all probability, 
be found to be very inconsiderable. 

A question of not less importance remains yet to be answered. 
Extends the desert from Lake Torrens uninterruptedly, and far 
inland to the Great Australia Bight, and is it contiguous to that 
of Western Australia, which stretches according to Mr. 
Gregory's investigations, north at least as far as Shark's Bay ? 
And thirdly, is the country between Shark's Bay and the 
Fitzroy River really destitute of streams entering the sea? 
Maritime surveys alone, even if carried out with the accuracy 
of a King, a Wickham or a Stokes will never completely dis- 
close all the estuaries on a mangrove lined shore. Thus, for 

166 An Historical Review of the 

instance, it was reserved to Grey's Land exploration to find the 
Glenelg River in North "Western Australia, which had escaped 
the scrutiny of the commander of H. M. S. Beagle. 

The employment exclusively of packhorses for conveyance, 
will always ensure a rapid progress, and the straightest line for 
a traveller. His starting-point should be established at the 
remotest station previous to the rainy season, to recruit men and 
animals before trials of the journey commence. The number 
of the party should be very limited, not only as involving the 
least delay, but also as on many places, water might be pro- 
cured by them, where it would not be obtainable for a 
large caravan, and as the great expense of providing for a large 
party might be employed with more advantage for the longer 
scrutiny of a larger tract of country by fewer individuals. The 
survey should be exact, and independent of the use of chrono- 
meters ; and above all, the positions of permanent waters should 
be marked with scrupulous accuracy. On this may depend the 
lives of those who may steer for the positions of a former ex- 
plorer after the obliteration of his track, particularly in our 
depressed interior where bearings are not always to be secured 
Mechanical skill should be at command for the repair of instru- 
ments, which on a journey through a wilderness are so liable to 
be injured. 

The use of camels in our deserts has been recommended, but 
when it is considered that much of the Australian interior is of 
a stony, and not of a sandy nature, that these animals re- 
quire a management of their own, and cannot roam about 
by night to find food, being deprived only of their freedom by 
the hobble chain — I still believe that horses will remain pre- 
ferable, if kept shod constantly. 

The country to the westward and north-west of the subtro- 
pical settlements of New South Wales is assigned to the new 
exploration of Mr. Gregory, as that in which probably Dr. Leich- 
hardt met his early fate. Should the enterprise be favoured by 
the season on this occasion, we may depend on a wide survey 
of North East Australia by that accurate explorer. 

From past experience we are, however, not entitled to anti- 
cipate the existence of a well-watered country in that direc- 
tion. This opinion receives additional weight when we con- 
sider that none of Dr. Leichhardt's animals of burden returned 
from the supposed locality of his destruction at the source of 
the Maranoa, and we can but fear that the unfortunate traveller 
advanced beyond the systems of the rivers of the east and north 
coast, being under the impression of a much wider extent 

Explorations of Australia. 167 

inland of the Carpentaria streams than Mr. Gregory has proved 
it to exist, and that he thus, with his whole party and animals, 
met a dreadful fate in the waterless wastes of the north-east 

The examination of the country north-west of Lake Torrens, 
we should leave to its own colonists after the noble manifes- 
tations in South Australia for enterprises of this nature. To 
the northward, however, of this colony, we may observe a large 
extent of country situated between the Lachlan and the 
Darling, and a greater still enclosed by the Darling, the War- 
rego, the Barcoo and Grey and Barrier Ranges, an area, indeed, 
equal in extent to that of the whole colony of Victoria, hitherto 
almost totally unexplored. 

This country, although belonging politically to New South 
Wales, will on account of its geographical position hereafter 
supply its produce to the auriferous northern districts of our 
own province, and claims, therefore, particularly since the Lower 
Darling navigation has been accomplished, our full attention. 
I am aware that what we know of the interior in that direction 
seems discouraging to any future exertions, although, perhaps, 
not more so than in any other line of exploration, which we 
could adopt with equal facility. 

Nor must we forget, that neither Sturt nor Kennedy traversed 
the outlines of this district at a favourable season, or in a 
favourable year. Moreover, if we trust to aboriginal traditions 
for a clue to Leichhardt's fate, we may have many chances of 
success when enquiring for him in that direction. And should 
the season favour the enterprise, features may be disclosed east- 
ward of the stony desert which may serve hereafter as a key 
for investigating fully the nature of Central Australia. 

It would, perhaps, not be needless to examine, previous 
to an attempt to cross the Continent from east to west, 
west, along its middle part, a distance of 2500 miles, the 
country north of the Great Bight (perhaps from Fowler's Bay) 
and east of Shark's Bay (perhaps from the Gascoigne). Without 
these precautions the undertaking seems, if we value existing 
testimony to be one not only of imminent risk, but also 
possessing limited chances of success. 

The limit assigned to this paper does neither admit of enter- 
ing into all the special merits nor into further details of former 
discoveries. Much has been done for extending the field of geogra- 
phy : more than one man has sunk in the struggle for such a noble 
purpose. Whoever listens to the special accounts of those, to 
whom Providence destined a safe return, will rejoice in their 

168 Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks 

addition to our knowledge, will sympathize with their sufferings, 
and will admire their wise arrangements and their perseverance, 
or, will learn from their experience how to guard in future 
against the difficulties which beset their path, or how success 
may be secured by those who boldly volunteer to resume their 

Much has been done, but much remains to be achieved ! 
And if the greatest genius which ever mankind possessed, after 
his most brilliant achievements, left us, with the modesty 
which always characterises a son of science, an immortal and 
self-denying word, we may regard the labours of our own 
great explorers only as leading stars for future discoveries, 
and we may apply to them Newton's philosophic words, " I 
have played like a child with the pebbles on the shore while the 
great ocean of truth lies unexplored before me." 

Akt. XX. — Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks in 
South Australia. By the Rev. Julian Edmund Woods, 
Catholic Missionary, Penola. 

[Bead before the Institute, 25th November, 1857.] 

There is no part of the science of Geology which is in a more 
unsatisfactory state than that portion which has to do with 
metamorphic rocks. While one section of scientific men pro- 
pound various theories as to the manner in which metamorphism 
is effected, others are questioning the very facts upon which 
they generalise, and not a few are found who give a very 
reluctant consent to the results which long investigations on 
the subject have produced. This state of things is, no doubt, 
owing to the want of a systematic series of observations in those 
countries in which metamorphism is most strongly manifested, and 
until this is accomplished we may be certain that the present 
difference of opinion will prevail. With a view therefore to call 
attention to a country where observation is most wanted, I am 
induced to lay before the Institute the result of some investiga- 
tions among metamorphic rocks in the northern settled districts 
of South Australia, and while I state that I believe I have been 
labouring in a place which offers a wide field for an experienced 

in South Australia. 169 

geologist, I must premise that what I have to offer is but a little 
thing in itself, and compared to what could be effected, scarcely 
anything more than a few facts imperfectly generalised. 

The whole of South Australif is, however, with few excep- 
tions, a vast array of metamorphic rocks. Whether at Cape 
Jervis, in the South, where the slate rocks form huge and 
majestic cliffs ; whether at Mount Lofty, near Adelaide, where 
immense ridges are formed of schist slates and eurite ; or 
whether at Mount Kemarkable, far north, the same phenomenon 
of metamorphism is constantly represented, and the intervening 
country everywhere gives the same appearance, with all the 
various gradations of form, colour, or mineral structure. To 
attempt to sum up all the evidence here offered, would require 
the patient investigation of ages : we can only make remarks 
on peculiarities here and there, and bring them before the notice 
of those better able to form theories from facts. Some twelve 
months ago, I was for some time residing not very far from 
the celebrated Burra Mines, and for some time occupied myself 
in recording the wonders of the rocks to be seen there. I saw 
enough to convince me that all the mineral deposits, whether 
iron, or copper, or lead, of that rich mining country, were all 
found amongst rocks that had been once stratified, but had 
since been altered by heat. One phenomenon however, I saw, gave 
me ample room for speculation, and occupied my attention for 
a considerable time, and being something more curious and 
singular than anything I have observed in this country, I wish 
to make it the subject of a paper to the Institute. I repeat, 
however, that it is but a small thing in itself, perhaps hardly 
wortli more than a passing notice. 

About four miles south of the little township of Clare, in the 
hills which render Minaro, Shiligolee Creek and the vicinity so 
beautifully picturesque, one notices a most singular appearance 
along those hills which extend their ridges in a northerly direc- 
tion. On every hill and in the gaps where the chain is for a 
moment broken, ascending and descending, there is a band of 
broken stone about two yards, or sometimes less in width, which 
is traceable without the smallest interruption, as long as the 
chain continues. These bands present the appearance of a road- 
way metalled with large fragments of stone, and though they are 
found on every chain of hills which runs in the same direction, 
they never run along the summit, but always a little to the right 
or left. As seen from the top of a hill they form so prominent 
a feature in the landscape that they cannot escape attention, and 
their regularity, their uniform width and compact appearance 

170 Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks 

make it difficult at first to realise that they had not been laid 
down by human hands. 

Had South Australia been longer inhabited, these bands 
would have been invested with some traditionary history. Some 
legend would probably give us a satisfactory reason for these 
royal roads, perchance calling in the assistance of the giants 
who balanced the rocking stones on the coast of Cornwall, or 
who fought with boulders at Stonehenge. The country where 
the phenomenon is most apparent, may be included in a square 
bounded on the north by Clare, on the south by Watervale, on 
the west by the Wakefield scrub, and on the east by Mintaro and 
FarreFs Flat. This tract encloses some of the most beautiful 
scenery in the colony. The hills, sometimes abrupt and some- 
times gently undulating, are covered with a rich vegetation, 
bearing large trees, which, raising their branches in the 
air, throw their shadows on some huge rock, which 
seems like a gem embedded in the shrubs and ferns below. 
Grassy slopes break out here and there, and these combined 
with a multitude of flowing brooks, bring back to one's recol- 
lection that union of peace and sublimity which is so common 
at home. 

To return to the bands of stone. In trying to account for them 
I was led into a series of observations, which would carry me 
much beyond the limits of an ordinary paper to attempt to 
describe. I must endeavour then to give only what bears upon 
the subject, and all imperfect as my solution is, I am en- 
couraged by knowing the matter must fall into abler hands 
than mine : for it is too remarkable to be left alone for any 
length of time, being in my opinion, quite as singular and as 
unparalleled as the far-famed parallel roads in the Highlands 
of Scotland. I have said the bands rim a little on one side of 
the top of the chains of hills. They are also found in the 
valleys or troughs between the ridges, only with this difference, 
that the band, which in its. passage goes along the hills, is 
composed of small fragments of stone, while those which run 
in the valley are composed of boulders. The higher the chain 
too, the smaller are the fragments and vice versa. Both bands 
and hills run parallel, and the direction is north 12° west, 
and though the bands are continued over the hills, and in the 
valleys, wherever a gap or break in the chain occurs, they never 
are on the highest part of the ridges or anticlinal axis, but 
always at an equal distance away from it, perhaps about ten 
yards. At first sight, it would be said these are volcanic dykes. 
Had they been so, there would have been nothing remarkable in 

in South Australia. 171 

their appearance in snch a form, and I should have been spared 
any investigation. The stone, however, of which they are 
composed is not of volcanic origin, but is a quartzos'e granular 
stone, probably eurite, and though crystalline, bearing distinctly 
lines of former stratification. Taking this fact into considera- 
tion, a great many difficulties arise in the way of an explanation 
of the origin of these bands. There is something so different 
in these appearances from any geological observations made 
elsewhere, something altogether so original, that the experience 
of others becomes useless as a method for finding a clue, and 
one must set to work entirely unaided. Fortunately the rocks 
in the immediate neighbourhood help us a little. On either 
side of the chains of hills (and it must be remembered that 
there are at least a dozen running parallel), except in the afore- 
said bands, on the plains for a long distance, the only rock that 
is visible is clay slate, inclined at nearly right angles to the 
horizon, dipping to the west on the western side, and to the east 
on the eastern side. This slate is extremely fissile, and the 
stroke is N. 7° W. or five degrees more northerly than the hills. 
This latter fact is of much importance, as it tends to show that 
whatever force upheaved the hills, it was different from the one 
which upheaved the slate to its present highly inclined position. 

On the east side the latter rock is more fissile, often possessed 
of veins of segregation, composed of either quartz, laterite, car- 
bonate of lime or specular iron, and containing throughout small 
cubical crystals of the above named iron ore, or hcematite in such 
numbers, that where the slate has decomposed and given rise to 
surface soil, the ground after a shower of rain is literally covered 
with these crystals, most beautifully exact in form. 

On the west side the slate is entirely schistose, so highly lami- 
nated as to crumble into scales when rubbed, and so 
micaceous, that it looks like delicate silk. The strata have 
become finely waved and exceedingly brittle. Sometimes on 
both sides the slate passes into an aluminous shale slate, soft 
and unctuous to the touch, and containing innumerable veins of 
dolomite and steatite. The latter is found in such quantities 
in one spot, as to form an article of food for the natives, when 
pressed by extreme hunger. 

I think there can be little doubt that heat has produced here 
a chemical change, to cause these appearances both on the east 
and west sides of the hills. For in a deep crevice or gully on 
the western side, which descends precipitously to the base of the 
hill, one sees (at the base), the extraordinary alteration the 
strata have undergone. The schist has become contorted, so as 

172 Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks 

to make immense curves, doubling back upon itself and making 
large folds, taking most wonderful forms. In fact, I can com- 
pare it to nothing else than the contortions of strata in the 
largest of the Cyclopian Islands as described by Sir Charles 
Lyell. The schist always contains the little crystals before 
alluded to, is very brittle, of a dull green colour, and always 
preserving that beautiful silky appearance. Now, as such con- 
tortions are known to have been caused by heat and volcanic 
action in the Cyclopian Islands, we may reasonably argue from 
analogy, that the same cause has operated here, though not 
apparent. In no part of the slate, wherever it is met with, is 
it entirely free from alteration, for in the valleys it is sometimes 
met with, where the strata become crystalline (eurite), which pass 
into slate and again into eurite alternately, for some 
distance. The crystalline portions bear the marks of stratifi- 
cation, with segregated veins of quartz, and the slaty parts are 
intersected with veins of carbonate of lime, running at right 
angles to the plane of stratification. Here then, we have some- 
thing which throws light upon the subject of inquiry. We 
have evidence first of a force which upheaved the slate into its 
present position. A force distinct from that which raised the 
hills, because it has been exerted in a more northerly direction. 
Secondly, we have evidence of heat which altered the strata so 
raised. We are sure that the heat was subsequent to the up- 
heaval, because it caused the veins of segregation partly, if not 
entirely, which run through several strata in an almost unbroken 
line, and if upheaval occurred afterwards, such line must neces- 
sarily have been disturbed, which is not the case. There can 
be but little doubt, that the heat which altered the slate, also 
crystallised the bands of stone, but whether this was before the 
upheaval of the hills, on which the most of them run, or after- 
wards, we have yet to inquire. 

The theory which I am inclined to adopt for the origin of 
the "bands," would be in favour of the heat having preceded, 
and the best explanation of the reasons on which this is 
founded, will be to give the theory. Supposing, after the up- 
heaval of the slate, and before it had commenced to decompose, 
certain portions of it running in parallel lines were exposed to 
the influence of caloric coming from the depths of the earth, 
either by longitudinal and parallel cracks in the crust over- 
laying some subterranean igneous mass, or by the flow of 
currents of trap in underground channels. The rock so exposed 
would be crystallised, and the surrounding strata more or less 
affected, provided we can suppose a narrow opening happening 

in South Australia. 173 

in the under crust without reaching the upper surface. The 
crystalline portion would not be liable to decomposition Avhile 
the latter woidd. Let ages do their work then on the uncrys- 
tallised portion, and the strata will become decomposed into 
surface soil, and so disappear ; but the really altered rock would 
be unaffected, except, perhaps, rounded and weather-worn, and 
would stand out in ridges of boulders. Upheaval now begins, 
at a centre a little removed from them, and they become broken 
from the under-pressing force, much more, of course, in pro- 
portion as the upheaval is greater, and then we have the bands 
precisely in the state in which we find them now. Be it 
observed, that everything bears out this view. For in the first 
place, the soil has formerly been composed of slate. Fortu- 
nately the plough has never yet broken the turf, and we have 
but to dig a foot or two to find the truth of this. The soil on 
being uncovered, shows the former marks of stratification as 
plain as possible. Again, the bands are broken smaller in 
proportion as they go over a higher ridge. 

But as to the cause of the crystallisation, I know great excep- 
tion may be taken. It may be said that on the supposition of 
parallel cracks, I am calling to my assistance phenomena that 
have never been observed elsewhere. This is true. But are 
not these appearances in question such as have not been ob- 
served elsewhere ; and are we not as yet in ignorance of the 
greater portion of geological phenomena in the world ? And 
to answer all objection, let me say that here are appearances 
(the bands), which are clearly not dykes, nor due to anything 
that in our present state of geological knowledge we can ac- 
count for ; and I only take upon myself to say they might be 
caused by such or such an agent, at the same time showing, as 
far as evidence goes, my theory is borne out. If, notwith- 
standing everything, I am not correct in my views, at least it 
will be admitted that a cause has been in operation which we 
are not cognisant of, and it is some slight advantage to geology 
to know that there are more things in the earth's crust than its 
present philosophy can account for. If it can be shown, how- 
ever, that the upheaval was prior to the crystallisation, then my 
theory falls to the ground. But nothing seen supports such a 
view. It is true that some of the hills which are the very 
highest (where their height, if they existed previously, would 
keep them more out of the reach of subterranean agents) 
the bands are less crystalline and sometimes unaltered, but this 
is occasionally observed in the bands of the valleys, and again in 
some very high hills they are the most completely crystallised of 


174 Observations on some Metamorphic Rocks 

all, though still preserving former lines of stratification, so that 
this difference must be entirely attributed to mere local causes. 
Now as to the probability of parallel cracks. If these were 
made at all, they would probably give rise to dykes of trap. 
But if owing to some unknown cause, the cracks only extended 
through some strata, and not through others (more moderately 
tilted, for instance), the trap would stop some distance from the 
sur face, and crystallise the stone above. I know this appears 
far-fetched, but we must' remember that far less probable theo- 
ries have been verified by investigation. 

There is, however, another cause to which the bands may be 
attributed. They may have arisen from under-ground flows 
of lava, prior to the raising of the hills. This view has only 
two circumstances to support it. There is an extinct volcano 
about thirty-seven miles to • the N.N.W., above the river 
Brouo-hton, and we know from experience, that lava occasionally 
flows underground. The volcano I allude to, which I never had 
an opportunity of examining closely, appears to have greatly 
disturbed the features of the country around ; and may pro- 
bably be not yet quite extinct, as shocks of earthquakes are 
frequently felt at Mr. Fisher's home station at Bundalier (some 
of which have shaken the walls of the house) ; and what is of 
more importance just now, this volcano has given rise to im- 
mense quantities of lava. It is not difficult to suppose lava to 
have flowed under ground for such a distance, and if it did it 
would have given rise to such appearances as the bands. I may 
mention a case by way of illustration. In a paper I have pub- 
lished about the geology of Mount G-ambier, I have shown that 
the lava has there flowed under ground. At Mount Schank it 
has come to the surface, and though it appears in the form of 
trap rock, it runs in a band similar to the one we are here 
speaking of. But the resemblance is more striking even than 
this. At Mount Schank, where a second flow of lava has oc- 
curred the uppermost flow has been forced into upright 
boulders, and appears in form exactly like one of the bands 
which occur in a valley. Now, as from a second flow of under 
trap, we should expect an appearance like the bands, from the 
way the cool trap would be tilted up : the trap in this case 
occupying exactly the place of the metamorphic rock. The 
similarity is, to say the least, very remarkable. 

But supposing neither theory to be the true one, we are 
not entirely at a loss to suggest a cause. There is evidence of 
upheaval nearly in the same direction at distinct periods, show- 
ing a uniform disturbance in the same place at different times. 

in South Australia. 175 

Such a disturbance must have had some particular cause to 
make it exert itself in so uniform a manner. Thus, there is 
upheaval of the slate, crystallisation of the same, and upheaval of 
the hills in nearly the same direction. We are not at present 
aware of the mode in which hills are upraised, but the general 
supposition is, that fire causes the disturbance : and if fire was so 
long an active and yet so partial an agent, as to cause the same 
disturbance, at the same places, at different times, it can easily be 
imagined to have been equally partial in affecting the slate, 
though the manner in which it did so is not patent. Or to 
make it plainer, if it upheaved parallel and narrow chains of 
hills, leaving sometimes wide valleys between, it can be easily 
understood to have altered some part of the slate and sjoared 
others. If these facts shoidd hereafter be looked into, the idea 
that mountains are upheaved through igneous agency, will be- 
come something more than a mere supposition. 

I have one more question to settle, that is the age of these 
rocks. They are very (geologically) ancient, but enclose no 
fossils. Had they done so formerly such remains would, of 
course, have been obliterated by the metamorphic action. They 
are probably of either the Cambrian or Silurian formation, but 
this is mere guesswork, supported by little more than resem- 
blances hi mineral character, &c. That they have existed for 
ages in their present position cannot be doubted, for it takes no 
small time to decompose hard slaty rock into a surface soil, 
sometimes many feet deep. Veins of segregation too, as I have 
observed, are common. Some of them are of quartz, and have 
doubtless been formed in many cases by silica filtering into 
crevices already made in the metamorphic rock. This is a fact 
where observation is much wanted, as it is not at the present 
moment in any way clear, to what we are to attribute the quartz 
veins which occur so commonly in rocks. In the instances I 
am mentioning it is difficult to attribute them to heat, and 
yet though filtration is the only resource to explain them, 
the peculiar manner in which it is exercised in these 
cases is but very imperfectly understood. The Dolo- 
mites I have mentioned have doubtless been formed in 
the wet way, by the re-action upon each other of carbonates 
of lime and magnesia. The same may be said of the steatite. 
The altered rock where the crystallization has been perfect 
is a light granular stone, with white flour-like feldspar 
disseminated through it. It is sometimes of a pure white colour, 
sometimes a pinkish yellow, and .again a deep red and highly 
ferruginous. The specific gravity ranges from 2.4 to 2.86. 

176 Metamorphic Rocks in South Australia. 

There is one rock which is so rich in magnesia as to give rise to 
great beds of steatite, and another is so aluminous as to aftect 
the taste of water in the neighbourhood, which water gives large 
quantities of alumina on analysis. In both the rocks the stratifica- 
tion is perfect, and their composition gives one an idea of the sin- 
gular state of the ocean from which they were deposited. Sulphur is 
also present. I exposed a large quantity of the powdered rock, 
to heat in a retort, and the quantity of sulphur that sublimed 
was quite surprising. I could detect no sulphates. At a 
place, east of the hills, so often alluded to, there is a vein of iron 
ore, and the strata on each side are variegated with most singu- 
lar colours. I have one specimen where the rock is changed to 
a most beautiful blue, of the finest hue that could be imagined, 
so distinct was the colour that I actually analysed a portion to 
detect copper or cobalt before I became aware that this was owing 
merely to the influence of heat. 

In conclusion, it may be said to those who are fond of 
regarding South Australia as a country, the whole of which has 
been recently raised from the sea, that these rocks at least, and 
a great portion of the country immediately around, were certainly 
dry land at a time when the sea rolled over the spot where 
Adelaide now stands ; and if, as I believe it may be proved, the 
south coast of South Australia was under water at a recent 
period, tracts of country such as Clare, and the Mount Lofty 
ranges formed an Island Archipelago. The sea beat overland 
where the busy hands of men have now raised a city,, using for 
that purpose the very spoils which the ocean left behind, but 
while it did so, it spared a spot where fire had exerted its 
underground ravages ages before, leaving rocks and stones to tell 
to man, the magnitude and power of the earth's Great Framer. 





Adopted by the Observatory Committee, and received at the General 
Meeting of the Institute, held on the 7th of December, 1857. 

Me. Pbesident and Gentlemen, 

The Committee was appointed to wait on Her Majesty's Go- 
vernment, and take such other steps as they might deem necessary 
to promote the establishment of an Astronomical, Magnetical and 
Meteorological Observatory, on a scale commensurate with the im- 
portance of the colony. 

The Committee, having discussed the subject at several meetings, 
agreed to the following Memorial, which was presented to the Hon. 
the Chief Secretary, on the 24th November last. 


Sie — Towards the end of last year a Committee of the Philosophical 
Institute had the honor of drawing the attention of Her Majesty's 
Government to the great service which would be rendered to Astro- 
nomical Science by the establishment of an Observatory provided 
with a reflecting telescope of large optical power for the examination 
of the nebulae of the Southern Hemisphere. 

In the memorial presented on that occasion, a copy of which is 
appended, the interest attaching to this branch of investigation was 
set forward, and the general nature of the work to be done. 

We have now the honor to renew the recommendation, and in 
doing so we beg to lay before you, more in detail, the nature of the 
arrangements which it is desirable to carry out, and an estimate of 
the probable expense. 

For the Astronomical work the instruments required are — 

First, a reflecting telescope, with mirror of four feet aperture, 
mounted equatorially, with clockwork movement ; this instrument, 

ii Report of Observatory Committee. 

with 12 eye pieces, micrometers of the most improved construction, 
&c, would cost £4,200. 

An extra speculum, in case of accident, and a polishing machine 
would cost about £700 more. 

Secondly, a Transit Circle. 

For this we recommend an instrument having a telescope of about 
five feet focal length and five inches aperture, with two circles three 
feet in diameter, one roughly graduated for setting and clamping, the 
other graduated to intervals of 5' and read by six microscopes. This 
instrument, with all the necessary microscopes for reading, telescopes 
for collimating, illuminating apparatus for wires and field, &c, 
constructed by Messrs Troughton and Simms, would cost £800. 

The work to be done by the large telescope was fully explained on 
a former occasion* ; the transit circle should be employed in deter- 
mining the position of the southern stars with the same accuracy as 
has been arrived at in the northern hemisphere. 

Another important service which it would render would be the 
more accurate determination of the co-efficient and law of refraction, 
by observations on the zenith distances of stars, taken in combination 
with observations of the same stars in the observatories of the 
northern hemisphere. 

As subsidiary instruments in the Astronomical Observatory, there 
should be a sidereal time clock, a mean time clock, and a chrono- 
meter. The cost of these would not exceed £150. 

As a record of the state of the atmosphere, at the time of every 
observation, must be made, in order to determine the proper correc- 
tion for refraction, the Astronomical Observatory should also be 
provided with a standard barometer and a stand of thermometers : 
and since a large part of the work of a meteorological observatory 
would thus necessarily form part of the Astronomical Observatory, it 
would require no addition to the staff of assistants if the set of 
meteorological instruments were rendered complete, by the addition 
of a self-registering anemometer, an ajmaratus for determining the 
electrical state of the atmosphere, and a few minor instruments. 

No observations, so far as we are aware, have yet been made in 
the colony for the determination of the electrical state of the atmos- 
phere, and as there is reason to believe that this is intimately con- 
nected with the prevalence of dust storms, and as it undoubtedly 
exercises an important influence on the progress of vegetation, we 
consider its examination of great importance. 

As regards the Magnetic Observatory, we beg to call to your recol- 
lection the unparalleled exertion which was commenced many years 
ago to ascertain the magnetic phenomena of the earth. 

* On presenting the Memorial, the Committee stated that since it had been 
drawn up the mail had arrived, bringing a report of the meeting of the British 
Association at Dublin this year, that the British Association were renewing 
their application to the Imperial Government for the large Southern Telescope. 

Report of Observatory Committee. hi 

Numerous fixed observatories were established throughout the 
civilized world, and were not reduced hi number until they had 
accomplished the objects for which they were immediately intended. 
One of these was established at Hobart Town, and the observations 
made there contain all that is to be expected from constant observa- 
tions in this region of the world, until the instrumental means of 
observation shall have been made more nearly perfect than is at 
present the case. 

Contemporaneously with the working of these fixed observatories, 
magnetic surveys were made by sea and by land. 

As regards the importance of a magnetic survey, and the progress 
already made in various parts of the world, we cannot better ex- 
press ourselves than in the words of Major-General Sabine, hi an 
article on terrestrial magnetism, written by him for the edition of 
Johnstone's Physical Atlas, published hi 1856. He says: — 

" Originating hi recommendations from the British Association for 
" the Advancement of Science . . . the observations required 
"for the delineation of the three magnetic elements corresponding 
" to the present epoch over the whole accessible surface of the globe, 
" both on land and on the ocean, have received the assistance of our 
u own and foreign governments in a measure which is second only 
" to the aid afforded to Astronomical research." 
And again : — 

" The first in chronological order of these undertakings was the 
" Survey of the British Islands executed hi the years 1834-8." 
" Similar surveys have been executed in the extensive Austrian 
" States in the years 1846-54, by Mr. Kreil, and in and around Ba- 
" varia in 1849-53 by Dr. Lamont. . . The Magnetic Survey 
" of the British' Dominions in India by the MM. Schlagintweit, is 
" now in progress, as is that of the United States of America by 
" American observers under the superintendence of Dr. Bache. . . 
" "We may expect that other States in which the physical sciences 
" are held in esteem and cultivated will ere long follow these ex- 
" amples, and that in proportion as the importance of obtaining a 
" correct knowledge of the phenomena is recognised, provision will 
" be made for a repetition of the observations from time to time"*. 

* The Committee here stated that they had heard by this mail that, as regards 
magnetieal observations, instruments had been sent to the Consul at Mozambique, 
that the Austiian Government had commissioned Dr. Hoohstatter to superintend 
magnetieal observations during a scientific voyage, and that Dr. Hochstatter had 
visited the Kew Observatory to receive instructions in the use of his instruments. 

That magnetieal instruments had been furnished to Dr. Baikie and Lieutenant 
Glover for the expedition to Africa. 

That magnetieal instruments had been supplied to Lieut. Blakiston, R.A., for a 
magnetic survey of British North America. 

That magnetieal instruments were supplied for the North Polar Expedition just 
fitted out by Lady Franklin. 

And that a second magnetic survey of England and Scotland was being com- 
menced by Sir J. C. Ross and Mr. Welsh respectively, a sufficient time having 
elapsed since the previous survey in 1834-38. 

iv Report of Observatory Committee, 

Whilst the surveys of Sir J. Ross and Captains Moore and Clerk 
have given us the disposition of the lines of the three magnetic ele- 
ments in those parts of the southern hemisphere which are accessible 
to navigation, the Continent of Australia remains a blank upon the 

The Imperial Government has done its part in the Hobart Town 
Observatory, and we do not think that the Government of Victoria 
should withhold its contributions to the great scientific enquiry of 
the day, by neglecting to institute a survey of the colony. 

A gentleman is now in Melbourne, with instruments supplied for 
that purpose by the King of Bavaria, who has both liberally main- 
tained a well known fixed observatory at Munich, and also caused 
his kingdom to be surveyed. This gentleman has had a share in the 
latter work, and is well qualified for the employment. "We hope 
that the Colonial Government will not allow a foreign prince to do a 
work for us which other governments have done for themselves, but 
will both purchase the instruments and be at the whole expense of 
the survey, taking advantage of the knowledge and experience of 
Professor Neumeyer, should he be willing to enter into such an ar- 

Should such a survey be decided on, it will be necessary to have 
a fixed observatory to take observations contemporaneously with the 
Surveyor, in order to guard against error from magnetic disturbances. 
This would require observations of the three chief instruments at 
short intervals during two hours daily, at the time when the Sur- 
veyor should by agreement be making certain of his observations, 
which would be sufficient to guard against errors arising from the 
survey observations being taken during the time of a magnetic dis- 

We recommend that the survey should be at first limited to the 
country between the meridians of 144° and 145° 30'. 

The expenses would be the salaries and travelling expenses of the 
Surveyor and an attendant to put up his tent, &c, &c. 

The fixed observatory need involve but small expense. An exca- 
vation 20 feet square, with a thatched roof, so as to suffer as little 
as possible from changes of temperature, with four stone pillars for 
the instruments, is the whole building required. The observations 
might be made by the observer of the transit circle. 

If the Astronomical and Magnetical Observatories were in juxta- 
position, the staff would be — 1st. A Director, whose duty should be 
to take observations with the reflecting telescope, and to have the 
general superintendence of the other observations. This gentleman 
shoidd have some amount of scientific attainments. From all we 
can learn, however, we have no doubt that a very suitable person 
could be obtained for £600 a year. 2nd. A Transit Observer, who 
should also have charge of the meteorological observations, and those 
few magnetical observations made in the fixed observatory. And 

Report of Observatory Committee. v 

3rd. Two Attendants. For these persons no education would be re- 
quisite except that of reading and writing easily, and performing the 
ordinary operations of arithmetic with facility, and we are of opinion 
that a non-commissioned officer and two privates of the Sappers and 
Miners would be most suitable for these posts, or men of that class. 

As a site for the observatory, we recommend a spot in the 
western portion of the Royal Park, clear of trees, on the brow of 
the hill overlooking Flemington. As regards an observatory this 
spot is unobjectionable ; and in the event of a Trigonometrical 
survey of the colony being carried out, would form a most suitable 
starting point. It commands an uninterrupted view of Station 
Peak and Mount Macedon, which would form with it an admirable 
fundamental triangle, having Keilor Plains, the most suitable place 
for measuring a base line, within it. 

The buildings requisite for the Astronomical Observatory woidd 

1. A foundation and enclosure for the large telescope, which 

would not be covered in. 

2. A transit room, 1 6 feet square. 

3. A calculating room, or library. 

4. An attendant's room, which might be used as a bed room. 

We do not recommend that there be a residence provided in the 
observatory buildings. A residence for the observer, if provided, 
should be in a detached building, not far distant. 

We are also of opinion that it would be desirable that these 
should be strongly and substantially built of wood, in order that the 
building may differ in temperature from the surrounding air as little 
as possible. 

We wish it to be borne in mind that in recommending to the 
Government the establishment of an observatory the Philosophical 
Institute is not asking anything for itself, but is only coming for- 
ward, as similar institutions at home have always done when there 
was any great national scientific work to be undertaken, to urge 
upon the Government to undertake, in its own way, what they be- 
lieve to be a great national work ; and to proffer to the Government 
any assistance in their power in pointing out the objects which are 
in their opinion most deserving of attention, and the best mode of 
attaining them. 

There is one more point to which we wish to draw attention, viz., 
the necessity for providing such scientific control for the observatory 
and the magnetic survey as shall ensure that the exertions of all 
connected with it are profitably directed, and secure to the colony 
the results of those observations ; and at the same time will avoid 
the evils arising from fettering the free action of the director and 
surveyor. Without presuming to prescribe how this should be done, 
we beg to recommend to the consideration of the Government the 

vi Report of Observatory Committee. 

following extract from the Regulations of the Eoyal Observatory at 
Greenwich, published as an appendix to the observations of 1852 : 

" A Board of Visitors of the Royal Observatory is appointed by 

' warrant under the Royal Sign Manual. The constitution of this 

board has once been changed ; at present it is as follows : — The 

President of the Royal Society, and all who have held that office, 
' the President of the Royal Astronomical Society (not being Astro- 
' nomer Royal), and all who have held that office, the Savilian 
' Professor of Astronomy at Oxford for the time being, and the 
' Plumian Professor of Astronomy and Experimental Philosophy at 
' Cambridge for the time being are, ex officio, visitors. Five Fellows 
' of the Royal Society, and Five Fellows of the Royal Astronomical 
' Society, were appointed by name in the warrant, and on the occur- 
'■' rence of a vacancy a successor is appointed from the society, from 
* which the last member had been selected, by the President of that 
•' society for the time being. The number of members of the board 
" at this time is sixteen. 

" The Board of Visitors is authorised to direct the Astronomer 
' Royal to make such observations as the board shall think proper ; 
'■' to inspect the instruments, and communicate with the Lords of the 
'' Admiralty upon the arrangements for mamtaining them in efficient 
' order ; to make any suggestions to the Lords of the Admiralty 
: ' touching the observatory ; to require from the Astronomer Royal 
•' every three months a copy of the observations made, with a view 
'' to the printing of them ; and to meet at the observatory on a cer- 
1 tain day in every year, and to meet at such other times as may 
'' seem expedient to the Lords of the Admiralty." 

Under this control the Greenwich Observatory has been unsur- 
passed by any in the world for the efficiency with which it has 
carried on its work. 

In asking you to place upon the estimates a sufficient sum to carry 
out this work we may add that inasmuch as the construction of the 
instruments would occupy a considerable time, probably two years, 
the whole of the money would not have to be disbursed at once, but 
merely sufficient to justify the people in England to whom it was 
entrusted to proceed with the work. 

Report of Observatory Committee. 


Estimate of Expense op Observatory, 
first cost. 
Reflecting telescope, with extra speculum and polishing 

machine, complete 
Transit circle 
Clocks, &c. ... 
Meteorological apparatus 



- ... 150 




Package, freight, &c. 


Three assistants 
Incidental expenses ... 





The cost of magnetical instruments and the magnetic survey is 
not included. 

The annual cost would most probably not be required for three 

The payment of the the £7,000 might be spread over three years, 
thus : — 

1st year — On account of reflector ... ...£2,200 

Transit circle 800 

— £3,000 

2nd year — On account of reflector ... ... £2,000 

Buildings 1,000 


3rd year — Balance ... ... ... ... ... 1 000 


Copy of a Memorial presented to the Chief Secretary, 
December, 1856. 

Sir, — We have the honor, on behalf of the Philosophical Institute 
of Victoria, to draw your attention to a subject in which the colony is 
able to render a most important service to science, and in which we 
are convinced that we shall meet with the hearty co-operation of the 
Government, so far as is consistent with the other claims of the 
public service. 

viii Report of Observatory Committee. 

The object we have in view is the establishment of an Astrono- 
mical Observatory, to be commenced on a small scale which will 
enable it, when completed, to rank with the first observatories in 
Europe as regards those instruments which are generally found only 
in National Institutions, and to possess at the same time a telescope 
such as those which have been in one or two instances only con- 
structed by the wealth munificence and zeal of private individuals. 

As regards an Astronomical Observatory generally, it is unneces- 
sary to do more than draw your attention to the fact that, while 
upwards of seventy observatories, public or private, are at work in 
the northern hemisphere, two or three only exist in an efficient state 
in the southern hemisphere, from which you will at once perceive 
how great an amount of astronomical work still remains, which can 
only be clone in a southern latitude. 

But while thus urging the importance of establishing an observa- 
tory generally, we desire to bring more especially under your notice 
the peculiar interest which is attached to the department of nebular 
astronomy. " The mysterious forms on which it is employed are at 
" present objects of universal curiosity, from their position (outworks 
" as it were of the universe), their evident analogy to the system of 
" which we are a part and which we may hope to study in them, 
" and the dynamic questions which the marvellous arrangements of 
" many of them suggest." Its history may be briefly given : — 

" About 68 nebulas had been ill seen and worse described when 
the elder Herschel was led to explore them by the encouragement 
" and aid of his sovereign, George III. 

" To those previously known he not only added 2500 more, but 
" by classing them, by clear and methodical description and directing 
" attention to the relations which connect them with other portions 
" of the universe, he gave this branch of astronomy its powerful 
" vitality. 

" His no less distinguished son, following his example with even 
" greater success, has not merely extended the list of northern 
" nebulas to an extent which would have ennobled any other name, 
" but has given the whole work complete precision by an accurate 
" determination of the positions of all contained in his own and his 
" father's lists, thus placing them fully within the reach of subse- 
" quent observers. 

" Not content with this, he transported to "this" hemisphere those 
" instruments which had done such good service in " Europe," and has 
" thus enriched astronomy with 1,600 more, equally well observed, 
" but beyond the reach of European astronomers. 

" Yet, powerful as those instruments were, a much nearer 
" approach to the limit of useful optical power has been made by 
" Lord Kosse ; it was therefore to be expected that his telescope 
" would add considerably to our knowledge of the nebulas, and this 
" has been fully realised." 

Report of Observatory Committee. 

Many of the nebulse observed and described in Herschel's cata- 
logue presented a totally different appearance when viewed by the 
superior power of Lord Rosse's, and many details were disclosed, 
previously unknown and invisible in telescopes of lower power. 

The work, therefore, which is required to be done is " a minute re- 
" examination of at least all the brighter nebulae of Sir John Her- 
" schel's catalogues, embodied in drawings based on micrometer 
" measures, and so correct that each of them may be referred to 
" without doubt by future astronomers as an authentic record of the 
" original's appearance at a given epoch. 

" Of such drawings we at present possess very few. Most of the 
*' sketches by the Herschels are stated by them to be made merely by 
" the eye, and even those that were accurately taken by them are 
•' found to require amendment when compared with the appearances 
" in more powerful telescopes." 

The work derives additional interest from the fact that many of 
the most important nebulas, and those involving the solution of some 
of the most perplexing problems in physical astronomy are to be 
found in the southern hemisphere. 

The construction of a telescope sufficiently powerful to carry out 
these observations efficiently, together with the expenses incident to 
its transport to this colony, would involve an outlay of about £5,000, 
and a committee of gentlemen, consisting of Lord Rosse, Dr. Robin- 
son, Mr. Lassell and others, have expressed their willingness to su- 
perintend it while in progress. 

A suitable transit circle, with other minor instruments, would cost 
about £1,000 more, and the expense of the requisite buildings would 
not exceed £1,500. We have reason to believe, however, that there 
is already in the colony a transit circle which woidd be available for 
this purpose, in which case the expense of this instrument might be 
deducted from the estimate. 

In urging this recommendation on the attention of the govern- 
ment we feel greater confidence from the fact that the Royal Society 
of London and the British Association for the advancement of Sci- 
ence have already preceded us in pressing the subject on the atten- 
tion of the government at home.' 

The first memorial on the subject, from which some of the preceding 
statements are quoted, was presented to Lord John Russell in 1850, 
and after some delay, arising from the proposal not being in a suf- 
ficiently definite form, a favourable answer was finally obtained from 
Lord Aberdeen in 1854. 

Almost immediately afterwards the war commenced, and left no 
funds at the disposal of the government at home for new scientific 

In this position the matter rests at present ; and we venture to 
submit to the government that in the present flourishing condition of 
the finances of this colony, it will be hailed with universal satisfaction 

x Report of Committee on 

that the government should step forward and establish an institution 
which, on the one hand, will render such important service to science, 
while on the other, it will redound highly to the credit of the colony 
both in Australia and in Europe. 

An observatory has already been established in Sydney, and a 
gentleman charged with the task of its superintendence has arrived 
from England. It is, we believe, also in contemplation to establish 
an observatory in South Australia, and we trust that we shall not be 
considered as suggesting an improper rivalry when we say that the 
first of the Australian colonies in wealth and importance should not 
be the most backward hi the promotion of science. 

The Chief Secretary received the Committee with great courtesy, 
conversed freely on the subject, expressed himself as favourable to the 
establishment of air Observatory on a proper footing, and stated that 
he considered it had strong claims on the Government. That of 
course he could give no positive assurance without consulting his 
colleagues, and that it must depend on the manner in which the es- 
timates for revenue and expenditure turned out, whether any sum 
could be placed on the estimates for the year 1858. 

Report, drawn up by a Committee of the Council, on the subject of 
Mr. A. K. Smith's Paper on Wood Pavement, received at the 
Monthly General Meeting of the Institute, held on the 3rd of 
June, 1857. 
Gentlemen,, — Having been appointed by you, at your last meet- 
ing on the 29th of April, a committee for the consideration of a 
paper on Wood Pavement, read before the Institute on the 4th of 
March last by Mr. A. K. Smith, in connection with which the 
charge of plagiarism has been brought against him, we beg to submit 
the following report : — 

The question resolves itself into two heads. 

1. Did Mr. Smith intend, in using Mr. Hope's paper, to claim as 
his own any credit that might result from it 1 

2. If he had not any such intention, did he use the proper means 
to indicate the extracts from Mr. Hope's paper as such ? 

With reference to the former of these two heads, we have received 
the following evidence : — 

1. A letter from Mr. Donaldson, Colhngwood, clerk to Mr. A. K. 
Smith at the time the paper was prepared, but who has since left his 
employment, stating that he acted as Mr. Smith's amanuensis for 
twelve months, during which time he copied from notes and wrote from 
dictation some sixty different papers, official reports, &c, and amongst 

Paper on Wood Pavement. xi 

others his paper on Wood Pavement ; that the quotations of Mr. 
Hope's experiments were made from an abstract of his paper in the 
Practical Mechanics' and Engineers' Journal, which were marked for 
him to copy, and proceeds thus : — " I can further bear witness to 
the fact, that Mr. Smith was anxious to acknowledge that quotation, 
having given me instructions to be particular about it ; and in my 
anxiety to carry out his wishes I did personally alter the pronoun 
' r into ' Mr. Hope,' and in other instances changed the sense of the 
first person." 

2. A letter from the Hon. N. Guthridge, M.L.C., stating that Mr. 
Smith's paper, complete, I think, as far as the end of the third part, 
was in his hands in the month of February, prior to its being read 
before the Philosophical Institute. 

3. A letter from Mr. Smith himself, stating that after the paper 
was in the hands of Mr. Guthridge, he had a conversation with Mr. 
E. Snell, Engineer-in-Chief to the Melbourne and Geelong Piailway, 
on the subject, and that during the conversation Mr. Hope came in, 
and Mr. Smith, addressing him, said, he had been quoting from a 
namesake of his (Mr. Hope's) on the subject of wood pavement, 
whereon Mr. Hope said, that he himself was the person in question. 

To verify the statement of Mr. Smith, we wrote to Mr. Hope and 
to Mr. Snell, but have received no answer from either of these gen- 
tlemen, but : — 

4. In a letter dated April 10th, 1857, and published in the Argus 
of April 12th, Mr. Snell thus writes : — 

" About four months ago, they (Messrs. Hope and Smith) had a 
conversation in my presence on wood pavement, in which Mr. 
Smith announced his intention of quoting Mr. Hope's experiments, 
to which I don't think Mr. Hope at the time made any objection." 

5. On the 6th of April, 1857, an article appeared in the Argus, 
praising Mr. Smith's paper ; on the 7th, he (Mr. Smith) wrote a 
letter addressed to the Editor of the Argus, both the rough and the 
fair copy of which are before us, in which the following words 
occur : — " The experiments made by Mr. D. Hope (now in Melbourne, 
and late of the firm of Hope, Mackenzie, and Co., contractors) which 
I give in extenso from an abstract of a paper read by him to the 
Scottish Society of Arts, and communicated by him to the Practical 
Mechanics' and Engineers' Magazine. 

6. A letter from Mr. William B. Downe, of 10 A'Beckett-street, 
accompanying the rough copy above alluded to, and saying :, — "I 
beg to certify that the enclosed is the document prepared by Mr. A. 
K. Smith on the 7 th April last, and handed me to copy. Mr. 
Smith stated the reason why the letter was not sent to the paper 
for publication. 

The reason, doubtless, was the appearance, on April 8th, of the 
article headed " Stop Thief." 

xii Report of Committee on 

7. In the paper itself Mr. Smith states, that so far as he knows, 
no experiments have been made in Victoria ; the experiments 
quoted are evidently one series, made by the same person, and are 
spoken of by Mr. Smith as being Mr. Hope's, as follows : — 

" Mr. D. T. Hope, in a paper read before the Scottish Society of 
Arts ;" and again, further on, " I will, therefore, further refer to the 
experiments of Mr. Hope;" and Mr. Hope's name is again repeated. 

Having considered this evidence, we have concluded, as regards 
the first head, that Mr. Smith had no intention to claim as his own, 
either Mr. Hope's experiments or any credit that might result from 

As regards the second head, we invite your consideration of the 
following points : — 

1. The paper in question was prepared originally as a report for 
a committee of the Town Council, and before it was read Mr. Smith 
applied to the Council of the Philosophical Institute for permission 
to read it, without forfeiting the right to print it separately. Mr. 
Smith distinctly states that it was headed " An Essay" without his 
knowledge or consent. 

2. The paper was directed to the question of the propriety of using 
wood pavement in Melbourne. 

The whole as printed, consists of about 450 bines, and is divided 
as follows : — 

1st — The history of its introduction into Britain. 
2nd — Some accounts of various patents. 
3rd — Practical experiments. 

1. On the best position of the fibre. 

2. On the durability of wood as a material for street jmving. 

3. On the efficiency of wood for paving when necessarily sub- 

jected to wet and dry weather. 

4. Traction on wood pavement as compared with granite 

pitchers or macadamised roads. 

4th — Wood pavement might be used with greater advantage in the 
streets of Melbourne than of London. 

5th — General remarks. 

Of these five headings the third, " Practical Experiments," con- 
tains all the quotations from Mr. Hope's paper. 

At this point, however, it is necessary to draw attention to an - 
error introduced into the paper as printed. 

The heading "' III. Practical Experiments," is placed in the middle 
of the fourth subdivision of that head, where it obviously has no 
meaning at all. But in the manuscript there is a blank of half a 
page left for the heading where no blank of any kind appears in the 
printed copy, — viz., immediately before the words " Mr. T. D. Hope 
in a paper, &c." near the bottom of page 4 of the printed copy. Mr. 
Smith assures us that being much engaged at the time he neglected 
to correct the proofs, and takes blame to himself for this neglect. 

Paper on Wood Pavement. xiii 

The whole of the division, " Practical Experiments," consists of one 
series of experiments, to which Mr. Smith refers as Mr. Hope's, and 
which is quoted almost verbatim from the paper in the Practical 
Mechanics' and Engineers' Magazine. This we have compared with the 
paper communicated to the Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, and 
find them identical. 

The whole quotation (altered as stated by Mr. Donaldson) occu- 
pies about 150 lines, one-third of the printed paper, and forms the 
whole of division third. 

No quotations from Mr. Hope occur in any other part of the 

On this we may remark, that Mr. Hope's experiments having been 
pubUshed in three journals, viz., the Practical Mechanics' and En- 
gineers' Magazine, Jamieson's Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, and 
the Transactions of the Royal Scottish Society of Arts, were public 
property, at the disposal of any one for quotation, with the view of 
inferring results from them. Mr. Smith seems to us to have quoted 
them thus, leaving out any collateral evidence. Mr. Smith dis- 
tinctly states, on making his quotation, that, so far as he knows, no 
experiments have been made in Victoria, and therefore refers to Mr. 
Hope's experiments, and quotes them in such a manner as shows that 
they are one series, by one person. 

3. As some stress has been laid on the fact, that a small part of 
the extract is marked in inverted commas, and that the major part is 
not so marked, we have to state that no inverted commas at all ap- 
pear in the manuscript, and that Mr. Smith states that no authority 
was given by him to the printer for their introduction. 

From the consideration of these points we conclude that, to any 
one reading the paper carefully, there is sufficient internal evidence 
of the acknowledgment of the experiments quoted, but we consider 
that Mr. Smith is blameable for negligence in allowing the paper to 
be printed without his personal revision, and in introducing, among 
the results of Mr. Hope's experiments, several quotations, amounting 
together to about forty lines, containing statements of opinion by 
Mr. Hope, which, not being results of his experiments were liable 
to be attributed to Mr. Smith, and while accpiitting him of any in- 
tention to appropriate Mr. Hope's labours, we the more regret and 
condemn his negligence, inasmuch as the very alterations introduced 
by the amanuensis, in consequence of Mr. Smith's anxiety and direc- 
tion that the experiments should be acknowledged as Mr. Hope's, 
make those general statements of opinion appear to be Mr. Smith's. 
W. P. Wilson, M.A., F.C.P.S., Professor of Mathe- 
matics in the University of Melbourne. 
M. H. Irving, M.A., Professor of Classics in the 

University of Melbourne. 
John Macadam, M.D., Lecturer on Natural Science 
in the Scotch College, Melbourne. 

xiv Report of Exploration Committee. 


Brawn up by Drs. Wilkie, Mueller, and Macadam, adopted by 
the Committee, and received at a Special General Meeting 
of the Institute, held on the 22nd December, 1857. 

The Committee appointed at an Ordinary Meeting of the Philo- 
sophical Institute of Victoria, held on the 11th of November, 1857, 
for the purpose of inquiring into the practicability of fatting out in 
Victoria an expedition for traversing the unknown interior of the 
Australian Continent from east to west, beg to offer to the members 
of the Institute this, the First Report of their Proceedings, and the 
results arrived at in their inquiries ; and beg likewise to suggest such 
a modification in the plan originally proposed as a careful investiga- 
tion of the evidence and opinions of former Australian travellers has 
induced them to adopt. 

At the first meeting of the Committee, held on the 14th of No- 
vember, a strong desire manifested itself to foster, and that speedily 
and with all means within their reach, the project brought under 
their consideration. The desirability of Victoria taking a share in 
the labors of revealing the unexplored portion of the interior of Aus- 
tralia was unanimously acknowledged, and many members of the 
Committee supported on that occasion, the motion of Dr. Wilkie, 
namely, to adhere to the line of the tropic of Capricorn as far as the 
nature of the country and other circumstances would permit. A 
resolution was adopted to the effect that an appeal be made for pecu- 
niary support, both to the Government and the public, as also that a 
meeting of the colonists should be held in furtherance of the project. 
Mr. Bonwick was instructed to apply to A. C. Gregory, Esq., the 
commander of the North Australian Expedition,- for the opinion of 
that gentleman on the proposed route, and generally, to request the 
advice which his valuable experience would dictate. 

At the second meeting of the Committee, held on the 23rd No- 
vember, the business was, on the motion of Edward Wilson, Esq., 
postponed, in order that the members might have the opportunity of 
hearing Dr. Mueller's forthcoming paper before the Institute, on the 
subject of " Australian Exploration." 

At the third meeting of the Committee, held on the 30th Novem- 
ber, Dr. Mueller moved, pursuant to previous notice, that the starting 
point, originally fixed to be Port Curtis, should be changed for the 
Darling, because it seemed unadvisable to send almost simultaneously 
an expedition from Victoria to the subtropical east coast, whilst the 
New South Wales Government had already intrusted to Mr. Gregory 
the command of an expedition in search of Dr. Leichhardt, which is 
to proceed from Port Curtis to the westward. He pointed also to 
the additional chance which would thereby offer itself of gaining in- 

Report of Exploration Committee. xv 

formation as to the fate of Dr. Leickhardt (who it was said had 
fallen, with his party, into the hands of the natives, near the sources 
of the Maranoa.) By adopting the Darling as a starting point, Dr. 
Mueller said, a new and large portion of country in close proximity 
to the northern gold-fields of the colony of Victoria, and probably in 
part available for pastures, woidd be opened. Further, it seemed 
preferable to explore a new tract of country on the route to the Vic- 
toria River (of Sir Thomas Mitchell), and situated between the Dar- 
ling, Grey Range, and the Wan-ego, than proceeding over the well 
known country to the Victoria River from the eastward. 

Mr. Blandowski objected to this alteration in the proposed route, 
on account of the greater distance to be traversed ere a position on 
the Victoria River would be reached. He explained the difficulty of 
obtaining horses fit for an exploring party in the northern parts of 
this colony, and referred to the existence of poisonous herbs on the 
Darling as dangerous to such animals. 

Dr. Mueller contended that poisonous herbs were not restricted to 
some portions of the country near the Darling, but had proved de- 
structive to horses and other animals near Lake Torrens, in Western 
Australia, Arnheim's Land, and other parts of this continent, and 
would probably be encountered on many other lines of the country. 

Dr. Mackenna, considering that already New South Wales and 
South Australia were engaged in new enterprises of a kindred nature, 
moved that Victoria should cany out the objects in view without the 
co-operation of the neighboring colonies. This proposition received 
the sanction of the Committee. It was also agreed to establish, in 
the event of the plan of the exploration, in its fullest extent, meeting 
with the approbation of the Government and the colonists, a depot, 
as had been previously urged by Edward Wilson, Esq., on the junc- 
tion of the Thomson with the Victoria River, in lat. about 25° S. 
and long. 143° E., and to convey provisions, &c, to that locality, suf- 
ficient for the party during the space of two years. The decision on 
the best route for accomplishing this object was postponed on the 
motion of the Hon. Mr. Hodgson, M.L.C., until a reply would be 
received from Mr. Gregory. 

At the fourth meeting of the Committee, held on the 7th Decem- 
ber, the Hon. Secretary, Dr. Macadam read the answer in reply to 
the communication to Mr. Gregory, which the Committee deem it 
necessary to insert verbatim in this report, as an important document, 
based on unrivalled experience. 

66, Macquarie-street, Sydney, 

25th November, 1857. 
Dear Sir, — I had the pleasure of receiving your letter of the 16th 
inst., referring to the proposal of the Philosophical Institute of Vic- 
toria to initiate proceedings for the formation of an exploring expe- 
dition, having for its object the determination of the character of that 

xvi Report of Exploration Committee. 

portion of the Australian interior which has as yet baffled the 
attempts which have been made to penetrate it. 

With reference to the line suggested, simply viewing it on the map, 
no line could appear better chosen than that proposed, viz., the line 
of the tropic, from E. to W. The question, however, is, can this be 
effected with the means at present available 1 

JN ow it has been demonstrated that a party well equipped can per- 
form a journey of equal length with that contemplated ; but it is not 
the number of miles, but the character of the country to be traversed 
in which the real difficulty consists, and we should therefore inquire 
what is the probable nature of the country under consideration. 

First. The principal tract which is unexplored is comprised be- 
tween the meridians of 115° and 140°, and the parallels of 20° and 
32° of latitude, or 1,600 miles long by 800 miles wide. Its circum- 
ference is 4,500 miles, of which only 800 miles (on the N.W.) 
remain unexamined. Along the whole Hue exa min ed (extending to 
3,700 miles) the universal character of the country along the bound- 
ary is level sandy desert or worthless scrub, without any sign of 
change in advancing into the interior beyond that of increasing ste- 
rility, caused by the greater aridity of the climate, while not one 
single stream emanates from this inhospitable region, to indicate 
ranges of hills, better soil or climate, beyond the limits of actual 

At what conclusion can we therefore arrive, from a consideration 
of the premises, except that the interior is equally barren and 
forbidding with its exterior limits 1 

I therefore consider that it is almost hopeless to attempt to tra- 
verse this tract of country from east to west, and that the only 
prospect of success would be to penetrate it in the direction of its 
shorter diameter (north or south). 

But at what point is this practicable 1 The whole coast of the 
Australian Bight, from Streaky Bay to Cape Arid, is so barren that 
neither sufficient water nor grass exist at any spot for the formation 
of a depot from which a party could start, and the result of the 
expedition from Streaky Bay is very discouraging. Thus it only 
remains to attempt to penetrate on the northern side. But even 
here there is scarcely any prospect of success until that coast shall 
have been settled, when by forming a depot on the border, or rather 
on some of the creeks within the limits of the desert, early in the 
season, light parties might be pushed a considerable distance into it 
during the short continuance of the rains. 

This is certainly a somewhat gloomy view of the subject, but it is, I 
conceive, our duty to ascertain, as far as possible, the nature of the 
difficulties to be met before encountering them, as failure must be 
the result unless judicious preparations are made to overcome the 
obstacles which interpose. 

Thus reduced to the alternatives of either awaiting the sure but 

Report of Exploration Committee. xvii 

slow development of Australian geography, which must result froni a 
steady adherence to the system of keeping our explorations 400 or 
500 miles a-head of the settlements and gradually reducing the 
limits of the Australian terra incognita, or else to resort to the very 
doubtful, but, if successful, more brilliant mode of making energetic 
endeavours to accomplish the result without delay. Prudence would 
teach us to pause where undue haste may be disastrous. 

Now, as regards the route of any party which might start, under 
present circumstances, from the east coast, they must of necessity be 
prepared to return to it, as it is only for a few weeks in each rainy 
season that they could approach the colony of Western Australia, as 
it is bounded on the east by a waterless scrub, which has been pene- 
trated at several points some 200 miles ; and this tract of country, 
which perhaps extends as much further into the interior, can only be 
traversed in the wet seasons, when a little water collects on the bare 
rocks which exist at wide intervals, there being no water-courses, and 
the lower parts of the valleys occupied by salt marshes and lakes of 
brine. Even in following the coast to Shark's Bay I was nearly four 
days without water while crossing the scrubby plains north of the 
settlement, and only found one well of water during a search of 
thirteen days' duration. 

Moreton Bay thus becomes the most eligible point for the organi- 
sation of an exploring party, and by following down partially the 
Victoria Kiver of Sir T. Mitchell, a good position for a depot could 
be selected, from which a rightly equipped party could push to 
the westward by taking a sweep to the north of Sturt's furthest 

I expect shortly to visit the country to the N.W. of Moreton Bay, 
with a view of searching for traces of Dr. Leichhardt and his party, 
and, if possible, to ascertain the fate of that unfortunate explorer : 
and should any important features of the country be discovered, a 
knowledge of which might be of use to an exploring party, I shall 
feel pleasure in communicating all information relative thereto, as I 
apprehend that if the expedition is undertaken it could not start be- 
fore the period of my retiu-n, as the preliminary arrangements and 
organisation of the party would occupy several months. 

An opinion is prevalent that the range of hills which gives Eastern 
Australia the singular character of large streams descending into a 
depressed interior, will be found to extend along the north and west 
coasts. This is not the case, as the mountain range terminates at 
Cape York, and except the small track of hills in South Australia, 
no ranges exist to the west of the 142nd meridian, the whole of the 
western portion of the continent being only a sandy table-land, the 
edges of which are serrated by small watercourses which descend its 
slope to the coast. Thus in forming an estimate of the difficulties to 
be encountered in that portion of Australia, we must not adopt any 
experience of the country within the occupied portion of it. Were 

xviii Report of Exploration Committee. 

the obstacles so insignificant, Australia ere this had ceased to be a 
field for exploration. 

In conclusion, I beg to assure you that I shall ever feel a warm 
interest in whatever may tend to the development of the resources of 
this continent. 

And believe me to remain, 

Yours very truly, 

A. C. Gregory. 

In reference to the statement made by Mr. Gregory as to the pre- 
valence of salt water in many districts, particularly of the western 
ulterior, Mr. Blandowski expressed an opinion that this circumstance 
should not of itself deter an explorer, since in other districts of 
Australia fresh and salt water lakes were frequently found in proxi- 
mity to each other. 

Dr. Mueller explained that under the rapid evaporation in the dry 
atmosphere of the desert, combined with the solution of salt particles 
from the soil, stagnant water became entirelyundrinkable,and this even 
after heavy thunder showers. Such waters might be comparatively 
fresh, and he deduced in illustration the experience in this respect of 
Mr. Oakden in the country west of Lake Torrens. Dr. Mueller at the 
same time admitted that drainage water collecting in a sandy or not 
saline ground might always afford a supply of fresh water, as in the 
instance of Lake Benanee. From previous experience, however, 
large depressed tracts of saline country of recent formation might be 
expected in the interior desert, which, it might be anticipated, would 
be but scantily provided with fresh water. 

Dr. Mueller thought that the " Second Darling" (The " Paroo") 
described by the natives to Mr. Blansdowski, as existing to the 
north of the River Darling, would probably prove to be a continuation 
of the Warrego Creek, and if so would greatly facilitate an expedition 
northward from the Darling. Such, at least, would yield an oasis 
in the desert, similar to those on Eyre's Creek, Cooper's Creek, and 
Sturt's Creek, and which will always be of the highest importance to 
travellers proceeding towards central Australia. 

Dr. Wilkie and Mr. Blandowski urged that the route selected 
should be that from Port Curtis, proceeding to the junction of the 
Victoria and Thomson Pavers, at or near the junction of which a 
depot should be established. 

Dr. Mueller, in supporting the amendment to this motion, con- 
trasted the facility for the transit of stores furnished by the Murray 
steam navigation, almost to the point of unexplored country, with 
the difficult and partially mountainous route to be traversed when 
transporting, under not less expense, large quantities of stores from 
the east coast to the junction of the rivers named. He pointed out, 
also, that in selecting the Darling route a direct hue of communica- 

Report of Exploration Committee. xix 

tion would most probably be established between our own colony and 
the Victoria River. 

The amendment was supported by the Hon. Mr. Hodgson, in 
consequence of Mr. Blandowski's remarks on the existence of perma- 
nent water not far north of the Darling, which seemed to augur so 
favorably for that route. Mr. Hodgson expressed himself as in- 
fluenced, also, in his decision, by Mr. Gregory's communication. 
The amendment was carried. 

On the motion of the Hon. Mr. Hodgson, it was unanimously 
resolved to organise at once a light party for the exploration of the 
country from the Darling to the junction of the Victoria and Thom- 
som Rivers. Mr. Blandowski, in reply to a question from the Hon. 
Captain Clarke, R.E., stated that, in his ojjinion, a period of eight 
months (five of which to be employed in actual exploration) would 
be sufficient for this purpose. He adverted to the necessity of 
immediate despatch in the necessary preparations, in order to reap 
the full advantage of the next rainy season. The sum of two thou- 
sand pounds was deemed sufficient for efficiently crrrying out this 

Your Committee having thus reviewed the evidence that was be- 
fore them, with respect to the practicability of fitting out in Victoria 
a geographical expedition to traverse this continent from east to west, 
as near the tropic of Capricorn as the features of the country would 
permit, have to state that they are unanimous in opinion that the 
route indicated is, without doubt, that which would prove in every 
point of view the most valuable in its results, if it could be 

In order to make the attempt, however, with any prospect of 
success, it would be necessary to form, at or near the junction of the 
Thomson and Victoria Rivers a depot, amply furnished with stores 
and cattle sufficient for a period of at least two years. The expedi- 
tion would necessarily be a costly one, and your Committee fear 
that even under the most favourable circumstances it would be a 
hazardous undertaking. For these reasons your Committee are not 
prepared to recommend that immediate steps should be taken to 
organise an expedition for this great line of exploration, but they 
entertain the confident hope that the time is not far distant when 
this desirable object may be successfully undertaken by an expedition 
fitted out in Victoria. 

In recommending a less important and a less expensive expe- 
dition to be first undertaken, your Committee have had in 
view, first, the fact that Mr. Gregory is at present engaged 
in organising an exploring party in search of Leichhardt, and that 
he will in all probability traverse the country between the east coast 
and the proposed depot in the Victoria River, and on his return may 
be able. to furnish important information for guiding us as to the 
future exploration of the interior ; secondly, that it is at present un- 

xx Report of Exploration Committee. 

certain whether it would be better to reach the proposed depot from 
Victoria by the Darling, or from the east coast, as considerable 
difficulties woidd have to be encountered in either case. 

Your Committee have, therefore, arrived at the conclusion that, 
under all the circumstances, it would be better that a preliminary 
exploring expedition should be undertaken by Victoria, for the pur- 
pose of opening up, if practicable, a fine of communication between 
the Darling and the Victoria Rivers. They recommend that the 
expedition for this purpose should consist of a light party, and that 
their primary objects should be — first, to discover any available 
country for depasturing stock ; secondly, to examine the nature of 
the country near the junction of the Thomson and Victoria Rivers, 
Avith a view to determine the practicability of forming a suitable 
depot, with permanent water, for ulterior exploration. 

Your Committee recommend that the exploring party should 
reach the Darling River before the beginning of March ; and, 
according to the evidence already stated, they hope that the party 
will be able to accomplish this route to the Victoria River and back in 
less than five months, Ry that time Mr. Gregory will most likely have 
returned from his expedition in search of Leichhardt, and we shoidd 
also be hi possession of important information respecting the country 
to the north-west of Lake Torrens, the exploring of which is at pre- 
sent engaging the attention of the South Australian Government. 
We shall thus it is hoped, be in a much better position to undertake 
the more difficult and hazardous expedition afterwards through Central 
Australia. In recommending to the Institute this shorter and less 
expensive expedition, preparatory to the more important exploration 
of the interior, your Committee hope that the Institute will thus 
more readily obtain the support of the Government ; nor can they 
feel indifferent to the advantage of leading the path of civilisation 
into a portion of the interior which, although politically belonging to 
New South Wales, may, commercially, be regarded as an enlargement 
of the Victorian territory. 

Your Committee would also express the hope that the proposed 
expedition may possibly gain from the natives some traditional in- 
formation respecting Leichhardt's fate, and would recommend that 
the expedition be specially instructed to embrace every opportunity 
of searching on their route for traces of that ill-fated explorer. Your 
Committee are of opinion that in the proposed expedition from the 
Darling the number of the party shoidd be limited to four and a 
leader, in order to secure a more certain and speedy progress, and 
that the pack-horses may be safely reduced to twelve with two 
saddle-horses, which, with judicious arrangements, would carry an 
ample supply of provisions and all the requisites for an exploration 
of this tract of country during one rainy season ; and as Victoria is 
now for the first time invited to take part in the honorable task of 
exploration, your Committee indulge the hope that the liberality of 

Report of Exploration Committee. xxi 

the colonists of Victoria, aided by a grant from the Legislature, will 
enable the Philosophical Institute to take immediate steps to carry 
out the object contemplated. 

Your Committee refer with pleasure to Mr. Gregory's letter, which 
they have embodied in their report, and they are desirous to express 
their acknowledgment of the valuable information which it has 
afforded them. While Mr. Gregory, from long practical experience 
as an explorer, takes a somewhat desponding view of the probable 
nature of the unexplored country in Australia, and of the difficulties 
and dangers that would have to be encountered in any attempt to 
penetrate the great interior desert from east to west, your Committee 
. are glad that he does not altogether dissuade them from making the 
attempt. On the contrary, he suggests Moreton Bay as the most 
eligible place under existing circumstances for fitting out an expe- 
dition for this purpose, and recommends that a depot should be 
formed at an advanced point on the Victoria River, from which a 
light party might be pushed to the westward, shaping their course 
to the northward of Sturt's furthest point ; thus strengthening the 
opinions already adopted by your Committee on the best mode of 
exploring the vast interior of this continent. 

The uncertainty and scarcity of water is the grand obstacle to all 
future exploration ; but even if it should be impossible to penetrate 
the desert to any great distance from the depot on the Victoria River, 
from the total want of surface water, your Committee think it woidd 
perhaps be practicable for a light party to discover some favorable 
spot for securing permanent water from the tropical rains by arti- 
ficial means, and thus to form more advanced outposts in the desert, 
from which further explorations could be made, with the hope of 
ultimately succeeding in penetrating through the whole continent from 
east to west. 

However discouraging the exploration of this desert may appear, 
your Committee attach great importance to the information commu- 
nicated by Dr. Mueller, that there are in these inhospitable* regions 
occasional heavy falls of rain, and the salt lake in latitude 20° south, 
into which Sturt's Creek empties itself, although dry when discovered 
by Mr. Gregory, indicates by its immense size (being thirty miles in 
circumference) that a very large body of water must flow into it at 
certain times. From the general nature of the surface, the rain-water 
is very rapidly lost by absorption and evaporation ; but there are 
reasons for believing that it will be possible in some grassy flats and 
in some clay soils to secure for the purposes of outposts an artificial 
supply of permanent water. 

Your Committee have had under their consideration a lengthy 
communication from Mr. Belt, a member of the Institute, who pro- 
poses to undertake alone an expedition from the Gulf of Carpentaria 
to Adelaide. All that he requires is to be landed at the mouth of 

xxii Report of Exploration Committee. 

the Albert River, with five horses, provided with water-bags and a 
small supply of provisions and oats. 

He expects to be able to reach Sturt's furthest point without 
difficidty, and then to follow his track to Adelaide. 

Your Committee need only observe that the hostility and rapacity 
of the natives would render it extremely hazardous for one man to 
undertake such an expedition, not to mention the impossibility of 
one man leading or driving five horses through a scrubby, and it 
may be a waterless, country. They cannot, however, withhold their 
admiration of the zeal and courage displayed by Mr. Belt in thus 
offering single-handed to undertake so difficult and hazardous an 

It only remains for your Committee to recommend the appoint- 
ment of an Exploration Committee, with full powers to carry out the 
proposed object, and with authority to make an immediate application 
on behalf of the Institute to Her Majesty's Government to place the 
sum of £2,500 sterling on the Estimates to aid the expedition. 

A list of articles required for this expedition has been kindly fur- 
nished to your Committee by Dr. Mueller, and is appended to this 


5 saddle horses. 
12 pack horses. 
12 ditto saddles. 

5 saddles. 
17 saddle cloths. 
24 saddle bags. 

5 revolvers. 

5 carabines. 

1 sextant. 

1 artificial horizon. 
Nautical Almanack. 

1 telescope. 

34 pairs of hobbles, with nails. 
34 sets of horse shoes. 

2 Aneroid barometers. 
2 thermometers. 

1| tons of provisions (one year's provision for five, sugar, tea, 

flour, meat). 

Report of Exploration Committee. 

2 very light canvas tents. 

Straps and spare saddlery. 

Hammer and other implements for shoeing horses. 


A few thin iron pots, pannikins. 

Waterproof bags for carrying water. 

Spare boots (a pair for each individual. 

Material for preserving skins of animals. 

Paper for drying plants, half a ream. 

Eopes, spring scales. 

Spurs, clothing and blankets. 

Matches, soap. 

Fish-hooks, cordage. 

Writing paper, note-books, &c. 

Spade and pick, knives, bells. 


(as confirmed.) 


14:th January, 1857. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the last meeting were read and confirmed. 

A letter was read from C. Hodgkinson, Esq., C.E., Vice-President, 
stating that he would not wish to be put in nomination again for that 
office, and that he resigned his place, and his connection with the 
Institute, on account of the pressure of official business. 

The Hon. Secretary then read the Report of the Council for the 
past year. (See " Transactions " for 1856.) 

It was moved by Dr. Mackenna, seconded by R. Wadsworth, Esq., 
and carried, " that the Report be received." 

The Treasurer brought up a balance sheet, which he stated had 
not been audited. 

The meeting agreed to postpone discussion on this matter until 
Dr. WilMe's motion respecting the appointment of an Auditing 
Committee would be brought on. 

The ballotting for the officers was then proceeded with, and the 
following persons were duly elected. 

The Scrutineers appointed were Dr. Mackenna and the Hon. 

The Honorable Andrew Clarke, Captain, R.E. 

Professor Wilson and Dr. Wilkie. 

D. E. Wilkie, Esq., M.D. 

Honorary Secretary. 
R. Brough Smyth Esq., F. G. S. 

Minutes of Meetings. xxv 

Dr. Iffla. 

Rev. A. Morison. 
L. Becker, Esq. 
Professor Hearn. 
Professor Irving. 
A. R. C. Selwyn, Esq. 
John Macadam, Esq., M.D. 
Rev. John J. Bleasdale. 
Thomas E. Rawlinson, Esq., C.E., 
William Blandowski, Esq. 
Dr. Mackenna. 

Frederick Acheson, Esq., C.E. 
Dr. Wilkie made some observations respecting the methods adopted 
by the Scrutineers, which were replied to by the Hon. Secretary. 
Dr. Wilkie then, in pursuance of notice, moved — 
" That the sum of £25 be voted to Mr. Wekey, in consideration of 
" past services." 

This was seconded by Dr. Goethe. 
Professor Hearn moved the previous question. 
Seconded by Mr. Wadsworth. 

After a discussion Professor Wilson left the chair, and it was taken 
by G. Holmes, Esq. 

After a long discussion an amendment was put, and the meeting 
decided that Dr. Wilkie's motion should not be put. 

Dr. Wilkie then moved, " That he be allowed to amend his paper 
on a new form of Propeller." After a long discussion, Dr. Wilkie 
withdrew this. 

Dr. Wilkie then moved, — 

" That a Committee be appointed to examine and report on the 
" balance sheet, prepared by the auditors for 1 855, but not adopted 
" at the time by the Institute ; also, to examine and audit the Trea- 
" surer's account for 1856 ; such Committee to consist of Mr. Dobree, 
" Mr. G. Holmes, Mr. F. Acheson and the Treasurer." 

Professor Wilson spoke at some length in reply to Dr. Wilkie. 
The Committee was agreed to, but the names thereon were altered, 
and the following gentlemen were elected, — Dr. Wilkie, Messrs. 
Farewell, Dobree, and Holmes, and Professor Wilson. 

Mr. Smyth's name was on the amendment, but withdrawn at his 

It was moved by Mr. Dobree and seconded by Mr. Rawlinson, — 
" That a Committee be appointed to wait upon Archibald Michie, 
" Esq., one of the Members for the City, to request that he would 
" take the necessary steps to move in the Legislative Assembly, that 
" an address be presented to His Excellency Sip H. Barkly, K.C.B., 
I to place on the estimates for 1857, a sum not exceeding £500, hi aid 
" of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria. 

xxvi Minutes of Meetings. 

It was moved as an amendment by Dr. Becker, and seconded by 
Mr. Elliott, that the amount be £1,000. 

The motion so amended was carried. 

Dr. Iffla asked for leave to postpone the motion standing in his 

Leave granted. 

Mr. Dobree gave notice that he would move, — " That henceforth the 
Transactions be published every half year." 

ith February, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

The Reverend Alexander Morison in the chair. 

In the absence of Mr. R. Brough Smyth, Dr. Macadam officiated 
as Honorary Secretary. 

On the Minutes being read, several objections were stated ; amongst 
others, that the Auditing Committee was incorrectly represented. 

After some discussions, it was moved and seconded — " That the 
Minutes be expunged ;" but ultimately an amendment, proposed by 
Professor Hearn, and seconded by Dr. Wilkie, to the effect—" That 
" the confirmation of the Minutes be postponed until the next 
" meeting, so that the Secretary might revise them," was carried. 

The list of the gentlemen composing the Auditing Committee was 
corrected by Dr. Iffla, the mover of the committee, and stood thus : — 
Professor Wilson, Dr. Wilkie, and Messrs. Holmes, Dobree, and 

The Chairman read letters from Professor Wilson and Dr. Wilkie 
respectively, resigning the office of Vice-President, in order that 
the offer of one of the Vice-Presidentships might be made to Dr. 
Ferdinand Mueller, as suggested by a member at the previous meeting. 

Dr. MacKenna moved, and Mr. Acheson seconded,,-— 

" That the resignations be not accepted." 

Mr. Farewell moved as an amendment, seconded by Mr. 
Edwards, — 

" 'I hat the resignation of Dr. Wilkie be accepted, because of his 
" occupying two offices." 

The motion was carried. 

The Chairman then read a letter from R. Brough Smyth, Esq., 
resigning the office of Honorary Secretary. Mr. Smyth gave as a 
reason, " His differing from certain members of the recently-elected 
Council as to the position which such an officer ought to occupy." 

Professor Wilson and Dr. Macadam explained the nature and 
necessity of the resolution of Council, which bore upon the time to 
be given to authors as three days at furthest for returning printers' 
proofs for the transactions of the Institute, now in progress of publi- 

Min utes of Meetings. xxvii 

cation, and not leaving the time to be fixed for each author by the 
Honorary Secretary. 

Mr. A. K. Smith moved, and Mr. Edwards seconded, — " That the 
resignation be not accepted." 

The Rev. Mr. Bleasdale moved as an amendment, and Professor 
Hearn seconded, — 

" That Mr. Smyth's resignation be accepted, and that the thanks 
" of the members be given to Mr. Smyth for his past services to the 
" Institute." 

The amendment was carried. 

Dr. WilMe moved, — 

" That Dr. Macadam, who had been appointed by the Council to 
" edit the ' Transactions,' be Acting Honorary Secretary." 

This was seconded by Dr. Iffla, and carried. 

Professor Wilson read the audited balance sheet of the Treasurer, 
showing a balance of £212 19s. Id. against the Institute at the close 
of 1855, and a balance in favor of the Institute, at the close of 1856, 
of £177 2s. 9d., exclusive of £75 4s. of unpaid subscriptions. 

Dr. Iffla moved, — 

" The adoption of the report." 

Seconded by Professor Hearn, and carried. 

Mr. A. K. Smith moved, and Dr. Mackenna seconded, — 

" That a vote of thanks be tendered to the Treasurer, Dr. Wilkie, 
for the manner in which he had discharged his duties." 

This was carried. 

A vote of thanks was also passed to the Auditing Committee. 

The balance sheet was laid upon the table. 

Professor Wilson reported that a deputation appointed by the 
Council, and consisting of Drs. Wilkie, Iffla, Becker, and Macadam, 
with himself, had that day waited by arrangement upon His Excel- 
lency Sir Henry Barkly, K.C.B., and read a memorial, requesting 
that His Excellency would be pleased to become Patron of the 
Institute. His Excellency, in a highly complimentary reply, which, 
with the memorial, has been filed, had accepted the proffered title, 
and assured the deputation that his services would on all occasions 
be at the command of the Managing Committee of the Institute. 
His Excellency had also accepted an invitation to meet the members 
at dinner. 

Dr. Iffla moved, — 

" That a Committee be appointed to carry out the necessary 
" arrangements to receive His Excellency in a manner suited to the 
" occasion, to consist of Professor Wilson, Drs. Mackenna and 
" Macadam, and the mover." 

This was seconded by Professor Hearn, and carried. 

A communication was read from J. Wood Beilby, Esq., of Gipps' 
Land, in reference to Dr. Becker's paper on the Lyre-bird, and sub- 
mitting some additional particulars as to the habits of this bird, 

xxviii Minutes of Meetings. 

Dr. Becker explained that when his paper was published, Mr. 
Beilby's remarks would be found corroborative, in all points, of the 
statements already made by him to the Institute. 

On the motion of Dr. Becker, seconded by Professor Hearn, the 
Secretary was instructed to send the thanks of the Institute to Mr. 
Beilby for his communication and his promise to present the Insti- 
titute with a nest of the bird referred to. 

Professor Hearn moved, that Mr. Dobree's motion be put to the 
meeting, to the effect, "That henceforth the Transactions be published 
every half year." This was over-ruled on the shewing that by the 
laws this matter came within the province of the Council only. 

Professor Wilson verbally communicated the particular phenomena 
attending an instance of mirage, which he had seen on two successive 
Sundays, viz., the 1 1th and 1 8th January last, on the Sydney road, North 
Melbourne. The observations were very interesting, and Professor 
Wilson undertook to supply the Secretary with written details for 

Dr. Wilkie then read certain amendments and additions to his 
paper formerly communicated, on a " new Propeller." 

A discussion ensued as to whether Dr. Wilkie's paper in the 
amended form could appear in the Transactions of the Institute 
for 1856. 

Professor Wilson and Dr. Macadam shewed that Dr. Wilkie had 
withdrawn his paper from the Transactions of 1856, even when the 
offer of an appendix or annotation to it had been given him, pre- 
ferring to exclude certain portions and make additions and re-read. 

The matter was left to the Council. 

After a vote of thanks to the Chairman the Institute separated. 

Wh March, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the meetings held on the 14th of January and 
the 4th of February were read, and after some slight alterations, were 

His Excellency the Governor arrived at this stage and took part 
in the proceedings. 

A letter from Dr. Ferdinand Mueller was read, expressing his sense 
of the honor done him by the Society, in the proposal to offer him 
the office of one of the Vice-Presidents, but respectfully preferring to 
remain one of the humblest members of the Institute. 

The President, Captain Clarke, moved, — 

" That the honorary secretary be instructed to acknowledge the 
" receipt of the letter, and to convey to Dr. Mueller the appreciation 
•" of the Institute of his labours, and the sympathy of its members in 

Minutes of Meetings. xxix 

" his scientific researches, as also the expression of a hope that ere 
" long the Institute would be favored by Dr. Mueller's presence and 
" co-operation." 

His Excellency Sir Henry Barkly seconded the motion, and 
amongst other eulogistic remarks, stated that Sir Wm. Hooker of 
the Botanic Gardens at Kew, had expressed to His Excellency his 
high opinion of Dr. Mueller, in the terms " That his merits as a Bo- 
tanist were only superseded by his modesty as a man." 

The motion was carried by acclamation. 

The following gentlemen were admitted ordinary members of the 

Rev. John Barry, D.D., Melbourne. 

John S. Miller, Esq., Melbourne. 

John V. A. Brace, Esq. Contractor, Gisborne. 

Richard Hall Budd, Esq., B.A., Inspector of Denominational Schools, 

Thomas Skilling, Esq., Melbourne. 

J. D. Pinnock, Esq., Melbourne. 

Dr. W. M. Turnbull, Melbourne. 

Joseph Schneider. Esq., Architect, Melbourne. 

Charles Kennett, Esq., Melbourne. 

George UMch, Esq., Melbourne. 

Dr. Wilkie proposed John Macadam, M.D., as Honorary Secretary 
to the Institute. This was seconded by Dr. Iffla, and carried 

Professor Irving was elected Hon. Treasurer to the Institute, and 
R. Brough Smyth, Esq., and Thomas Skilling, Esq., Members of 

Sizar Elliott, Esq., read a paper on the Cestracion Phillippi (Port 
Jackson Shark), Trigonia and Terebratula of the Australian seas, 
illustrated by diagrams and specimens. 

The thanks of the Institute were given to Mr. Elliott for his 

The Honorary Secretary read a paper from Dr. Ferdinand Mueller 
on the " Octoclinis Macleayana" a new Australian Pine, accompanied 
by a specimen of part of the tree. 

The Secretary was instructed to convey to Dr. Mueller the thanks 
of the Institute. 

The Hon. Secretary read a paper from Mr. R. Brough Smyth on 
a new mineral from Maclvor, sent him by P. Chauncey, Esq., District 

The thanks of the Institute were given to Mr. Smyth. 

Mr. Alexander Kennedy Smith. C.E., then read a paper on Wood 
Pavement, and its comparative value as compared with granite- 
paved and macadamised roads. 

A discussion ensued, in which his Excellency, Mr. RawlinsoD, Mr. 
Acheson, and others took part. 

xxx Minutes of Meetings. 

The thanks of the Institute were given to Mr. Smith for his 

His Excellency here left the meeting. 

Dr. Iffla moved as follows : — 

" That the Museum Committee be instructed to wait upon Henry 
" Langlands, Esq., one of the members for the city, to request that 
" he would take the necessary steps to move in the Legislative As- 
" sembly, that an address be presented to His Excellency Sir Henry 
" Barkly, K.C.B., to place on the Estimates for 1857, a sum not ex- 
" ceeding 20,000/., towards the erection of a National Museum, in 
" connection with the Public Library, as originally intended The 
" Committee to adopt such further steps as they may deem neces- 
" sary to secure the co-operation of the representatives of the people 
" in furthering this important national object." 

This was seconded and carried. 

8th April, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

Dr. Iffla in the chair. 

The Minutes of the previous monthly meeting held on the 4th of 
March were read and confirmed. 

The Honorary Secretary read a letter from Dr. Mueller, sent in 
reply to the commuication of the Institute as agreed on at the former 

Dr. Mueller expressed his sense of the honor the Institute had 
done him, and his determination to advance its interests by frequent 

The members present who had been elected at the previous meet- 
ing, were introduced to the Institute by the Chairman. 

The Honorary Secretary then read a letter from Mr. A. K. 
Smith, C.E., having reference to a charge of literary larceny ascribed 
to him by the "Argus" newspaper. The charge bore upon the paper 
on wood pavement, read by Mr. Smith at the former meeting. 

Mr. Smith denied the validity of the conclusions drawn by the 
journal named and expressed his desire and intention to bring the 
whole matter before the Council of the Institute. 

The following gentlemen were ballotted for and admitted 
Ordinary Members of the Institute : — 

John Millar, Esq., C.E., F.S.A., Ceelong. 

George Neumayer, Esq., Melbourne. 

Rev. Wm. Henderson, Williamstown. 

Robert Nalder Clark, Esq., B.A., Cambridge, Melbourne. 

R. H. Home, Esq., Melbourne. 

John Kruse, Esq., Chemist, Melbourne. 

The Hon. W. C, Haines, Melbourne. 

Minutes of Meetings. xxxi 

Edward Snell, Esq., Engineer-in-Chief, Geelong and Melbourne 

Rev. T. P. Fenner, M.A., South Yarra. 

Andrew Burn, Esq., Geelong. 

E. G. Fitzgibbon, Esq., Town Clerk, Melbourne. 

John Shillinglaw,Esq., St. Kilda. 

John Joseph Shillinglaw, Esq., Melbourne. 

Charles Wilhelmi, Esq., Assistant Government Botanist, Melbourne. 

David Purdie Maclean, Esq., Surgeon, Williamstown. 

The Hon. Francis Murphy, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly. 

Charles Watt, Esq., Melbourne. 

Robert Knaggs, Esq., Surgeon, Melbourne. 

Anthony C. Brownless, Esq., M.D., Melbourne. 

Edward Wilson, Esq., then read a paper " On the Murray River 
Cod, with particulars of experiments instituted for introducing 
this fish into the Yarra." Specimens of the fish were exhibited. 

A discussion ensued as to whether the fish named was a sea-seek 
ing fish, and as to the eftect of this in militating against the ultimate 
success of Mr. Wilson's experiments. 

Professor McCoy considered that salt water was not essential to 
the life of sea-seeking fish. The value of the fish ladders, invented 
by the late Mr. Smith, of Deanston, Scotland, in enabling sea-seek- 
ing fish during the spawning season to surmount the obstacle of 
water falls and weirs in the rivers inhabited by them, was also 
alluded to as being suitable, if necessity demanded it, for assisting 
the Murray Cod over the falls of the Yarra, under Prince's bridge. 
Reference was also made to the mode of preserving fish alive for some 
days by surrounding them with moistened moss. 

Professor Irving moved a vote of thanks to Mr. Wilson for his 
communication, which was seconded by Mr. Acheson, and carried 

A paper was read by John Millar, Esq., C.E., Engineer-in-Chief to 
the Geelong Water Commission, " On the Supply of Water to the 
town of Geelong." The paper was illustrated by very beautiful 
maps of the gathering ground proposed, as also sections of the pro- 
jected reservoir at Wormbete. Specimens of the water intended to 
be supplied were also exhibited. 

An animated discussion ensued, in which Mr. Acheson, Professor 
McCoy, Mr. Rawlinson, Mr. A. K. Smith, Mr. Edward Wilson, and 
the Honorary Secretary took part. 

A vote of thanks to Mr. Millar, for his elaborate and interesting 
communication was proposed by Professor McCoy, seconded by Dr. 
Macadam, and unanimously carried. 

The Hon. Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions 
to the Institute, — 

1. Printed Report of the North Australian Exploring Expedition, 
with the maps of the route. Presented by Dr. Mueller. 

xxxii Minutes of Meetings. 

2. No. 2, Vol. XVII., of the Transactions of the Eoyal Astrono- 
mical Society. 

3. Three volumes presented by the Smythsonian Society of 
America, through Mr. Lord, Collins Street ; two volumes on Patents 
bearing on Mechanics and one on Patents relating to Agriculture. 

Mr. Hawlinson gave notice of motion for the next meeting,to the 
following effect, — 

" That a Committee, consisting of the President, Professor McCoy 
and Edward Wilson, Esq., be appointed to examine and report as to 
the necessity (if any such exists,) of aiding Mr. Edward Wilson in 
bringing to a successful issue his experiments on the introduction of 
the Murray River Cod fish into the Yarra Yarra and its tributaries." 

The Institute then separated. 

6th May, 1857. 

Mohthly Meeting. 

The Hon. Captain Clarke, RE., President, in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the previous monthly meeting were read and 

The new members elected at the preceding meeting were intro- 
duced by the President. 

The Honorary Secretary read a communication from His Excellency 
the Governor, in acknowledgment of the letter of condolence for- 
warded to His Excellency by the Council on the occasion of the 
much lamented death of Lady Barkly. 

The following gentlemen were balloted for, and admitted ordinary 
members of the Institute, — 

Martin Sholl, Esq., Secretary G. and M. Railway. 

Charles Edward Strutt, Esq., Melbourne. 

John Lanktree, Esq., Sec. S. and W. Commission, Melbourne. 

Wm. Farrage, Esq., Surgeon, Collingwood. 

D. T. Hope, Esq., Contractor, Melbourne. 

Wm. Austin Zeal, Esq., C.E., Melbourne. 

Samuel V. Kemp, Esq., C.E., St. Kilda. 

Robert Adams, Esq., C.E., Prahran. 

Albert Purchas, Esq., Architect, Melbourne. 

Benjamin F. Kane, Esq., Secretary N.B. of Education, Melbourne. 

Patrick Hayes, Esq., Operative Chemist, Sandridge. 

Henry Stevenson, Esq., North Melbourne. 

John Musson, Esq., Contractor, St. Kilda. 

The Honorary Secretary intimated that the " Transactions" of the 
Institute, for 1856, were printed, and that he only waited for final 
instructions from the Council to publish the same, in order that 
copies might be distributed to the members. 

A paper was read by Frederick Acheson, Esq., in the absence of 

Minutes of Meetings. xxxiii 

the author, R. Brough Smyth, Esq., C.E., &c, " On the Construction 
of an Instrument for ascertaining the Dew Point." The paper was 
accompanied by a sketch of the proposed instrument. 

Professor Wilson made some observations on the probable value 
and practicability of the instrument, but the discussion was post- 
poned on the suggestion of the President, until Mr. Smyth would 
have had made one of the proposed instruments and be thus enabled 
to exhibit its practical utility. 

Professor Neumayer (commissioned by the King of Bavaria to 
conduct Magnetical Observations in this colony,) then read a paper 
" On the Theory of Terrestrial Magnetism, and the newest steps 
" taken for its advancement and completion," with " an explanation 
" of the most approved instruments constructed for the conducting 
" of such researches." The paper was illustrated by diagrams, and 
an extensive collection of magnetical instruments. 

Professor Wilson spoke at considerable length during the discussion 
which ensued and considered that the establishment of a Magnetical 
Observatory had now become indispensable, and indeed, was a point 
of national honor. He referred to the efforts of the British Asso- 
ciation in recommending the British Government to take advantage 
of her extended Colonial empire to further such researches. The 
Professor also adverted to the insufficiency of the thermal action of 
the sun to explain the phenomena of terrestrial magnetism, and ad- 
vanced as an argument in favor of his view, that the existence of the 
spots on the sun's disc, and the changes to which these were subject, 
had no influence upon the intensity of the earth's magnetism. He 
quoted results obtained at the magnetical observatories of To- 
ronto, St. Helena, Munich, and Hobart Town. Professor Wilson, on 
moving a vote of thanks to Professor Neumayer, expressed his 
earnest hope that the Government of Victoria would soon furnish 
the necessary means for establishing a Magnetical Observatory. 

Dr. Iffla seconded the motion, and the President, Captain Clarke, 
in supporting it, referred to the practical bearings of magnetic sci- 
ence, and alluded to the value of these observations in the correcting 
of the existing definitions of boundaries and in navigation. The Presi- 
dent further intimated that Colonel James was now sending out to 
this colony magnetical instruments, to be worked contemporaneously 
with the meteorological observations. In conclusion he passed a 
high eulogium on Professor Neumayer, and hoped that the 
Government would aid him to aid us. 

Thanks to Professor Neumayer were then given by acclamation. 

From the lateness of the hour, Mr. F. C. Christy's paper on 
"Railways in Victoria," announced in the notice paper, was postponed 
in its reading till next monthly meeting. 

Mr. Rawlinson then brought forward the motion standing in his 
name, which was seconded by the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale. 

Mr. Edward Wilson remarked that as he might leave the colony, 

xxxiv Minutes of Meetings. 

the adoption, if necessary, of his experiments by the Institute might 
tend to encourage well disposed persons to protect the fish in the 
early stages of their developement. 

The motion, after being modified, stood thus, and was passed, 
viz, — 

" That a Committee consisting of the President, Professor McCoy, 
" and Edward Wilson, Esq., be appointed to take any steps that may 
" seem requisite in bringing to a successful issue Mr. Edward Wilson's 
" experiments on the introduction of the Murray River Cod fish into 
" the Yarra Yarra and its tributaries." 

The Institute then separated. 

3rd June, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

The Hon. Captain Clarke, R.E., President in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the previous monthly meeting were read and con- 
firmed, and new members elected on that occasion were introduced 
by the President. 

The following gentlemen, on being balloted for, were admitted 
ordinary members of the Institute, viz, — 

B. C. Aspinall, Esq., M.L.A., East Melbourne. 

James Smith, Esq., Collingwood. 

Wm. Edward Bryson, Esq., C.E., Melbourne. 

Edward C. Symonds, Esq., Melbourne. 

William Schultz, Esq., Melbourne. 

James Macoboy, Esq., solicitor, Melbourne. 

William Elsden, Esq., C.E., Engineer to the M. and H. B. Railway 

J. B. Pounds, Esq., Surgeon, Pentridge. 

Henry Joseph, Esq., Melbourne. 

Thomas H. Rawlings, Esq., Epping. 

A. E. McCracken, Esq., Saltwater River. 

Robert Savage, Esq., St. Kilda. 

John C. Cochrane, Esq., Moonee Ponds. 

George B. Pennell, Esq., C.E., Gisborne. 

Francis Thomas Gell, Esq., Solicitor, Melbourne. 

H. F. Eaton, Esq., Melbourne 

Henry Smith, Esq., C.E., F.G.S., Ballaarat. 

Dr. John Gemmell, Woodville, East St. Kilda. 

The Rev. William Scott, M.A., F.C.P.S., Astronomer of New South 
Wales, and late Fellow and Lecturer of Sydney Sussex College, 
Cambridge, was, on the proposal of Professor Wilson, seconded by 
Dr. Macadam, elected by ballot a Corresponding Member of 
the Institute. 

The Honorary Secretory laid upon the table a communication from 

Minutes of Meetings. xxxv 

Wm, Henry Archer, Esq., enclosing a prospectus of Dr. Petermami's 
Geographical Journal, published in Hamburgh, and soliciting in the 
name of the Hamburgh Consul and on behalf of this Journal, con- 
tributions bearing upon meteorology, terrestrial magnetism, the 
distribution of plants, &c. 

The communication was remitted to the Council. 

Professor Wilson read the report drawn up by the Committee 
appointed by the Council of the Institute, to enquire into the cir- 
cumstances relating to Mr. A. K. Smith's paper on " Wood Pave- 
ment." Professor Wilson then moved that the report be received. 
This motion was seconded by Thomas E. Rawlinson, Esq., and 
unanimously carried. (See " Reports of Committees, page x.") 

The Honorary Secretary intimated that the "Transactions" of the 
Institute for 1856 had been published, and that copies were upon 
the table for distribution to such members as were not in arrear of 
subscription. He also requested the contributors to furnish him with 
a list of any errors existing in their papers, as published, with the 
view of issuing, if necessary, a table of errata. 

A paper was read by F. C. Christy, Esq., C.E., " On the Construc- 
tion, Working, and Management of Railways in Victoria." The 
paper was illustrated by a large colored map, exhibiting the proposed 
inland railway routes from Melbourne and Geelong respectively, as 
also the summit levels of each when crossing the dividing range. 
The following subjects were adverted to, viz., features of country — 
effects of inclines and curves — laying out of stations and workshops — 
permanent way — rolling stock — construction of locomotives and per- 
manent works — fuel — general management, and tramways or feeding 
lines. Mr. Christy recommended the use of flange rails which could 
be laid down without the use of wooden sleepers, since, in his opinion, 
wood might be expected to decay rapidly from atmospheric influence, 
and was, besides, objectionable from its liability to the ravages of 
the white ant, as also to combustion either from falling fuel or from 
bush fires. Mr. Christy believed that Barlow's plate rails would be 
found serviceable in this colony when fairly tried, and was inclined 
to disbelieve that any untoward influence from expansion would 

A lengthened discussion followed. Mr. Rawlinson objected to the 
use of iron sleepers, because of the rigidity of the road and conse- 
quent increased wear upon the rolling-stock. He doubted the freedom 
of Barlow's rails from the effects of expansion. 

Mr. Elliot questioned the influence of the white ant. 

Dr. Mueller confirmed the opinion stated as to the destruction of 
hard woods by this insect, and cited his own observations in North 
Australia, and even far southward. He had found the white ants 
in great numbers in growing wood, particularly in the medullary 
rays, in which their ravages apparently first began. 

Mr. Swyer believed that, under certain circumstances, larch 

xxxvi Minutes of Meetings. 

sleepers would wear out the iron rails, and referred to local illus- 
trations to prove that the period of duration for wood as given by 
the essayist was much too short. 

Mr. Holmes considered that the woods of the colony had not yet 
been fairly tried. 

Captain Clarke stated that Barlow's rails had been tried under the 
best circumstances on the Sydney and Parramatta Railway. The 
rails had proved a failure there, having began in a short time to 
buckle, even when three sleepers for each one recommended were 
used. Captain Clarke further thought that the best gradients had 
already been adopted for the proposed inland lines. He advocated 
single lines to begin with, and hoped that the general conclusions 
given in the paper read would not be accepted without proper 

In answer to a question from Professor Wilson, Dr. Mueller 
stated that he believed that resinous sap preserved woods best, and 
added that one species of Eucalyptus, called the Mahogany Eucalyp- 
tus, peculiar to Western Australia, resisted the action of the white 

Messrs. Zeal, R. Brough Smyth, A. K. Smith and others, also 
took part in the discussion, after which a vote of thanks was given 
to the Essayist. 

From the lateness of the hour, Mr. Edward Wilson's paper, on 
"the introduction of the British Song Bird," was postponed, and 
ordered to take precedence at the next Monthly Meeting of the 

1st July, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

The Hon. Captain Clarke, R.E., President, in the chair. 

The Minutes of the previous Monthly Meeting were read and 
confirmed, and recently-elected members were introduced by the 

The following gentlemen were elected ordinary members of the 
Institute by ballot : — 

The Hon. James Cowie, Esq., M.L.C., Geelong. 

Wm. Bennet Hull, Esq., C.E., Government Railway Department, 

Alexander Fisher, Esq., Surgeon, 83, Stephen-street. 

Robert Lawson, Esq., 2, Royal Terrace. 

Rev. Donald M'Donald, A.M., Emerald Hill. 

Henry Moors, Esq., St. Kilda. 

George Allan, Jun., Esq., Melbourne. 

George Mackay, Esq,, L.L.D., Melbourne. 

Lieut. Henry Amsinck, R.N., Melbourne. 

Minutes of Meetings. xxxvii 

J. G. Knight, Esq., Architect of the Houses of Parliament. 

Edgar Ray, Esq., Melbourne. 

Wm. B. Hamilton, Esq., Melbourne. 

Matthew William Hawkins, Esq., Government Railway Offices. 

John Watson, Esq., 37, Bourke-street, Melbourne. 

Wm. Henry Green, Esq., C.E., Government Railway Offices. 

Thomas Hepburn, Esq., Smeaton House, Creswick. 

Robert Watson, Esq., C.E., Government Railway Offices. 

Rev. W. A. Fletcher, M.A., St. Eilda. 

The Hon. Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, 
viz. : — Vocabulary of Dialects of Aboriginal Tribes of Tasmania, by 
Joseph Milligan, Esq., F.L.S. ; the Second Meteorological Report for 
Victoria, by the Government ; Meteorological Tables for Tasmania, 
from January to May inclusive, by the Royal Society of Tasmania. 

Edward Wilson, Esq., then read a paper " on the introduction of 
the British Song Bird." Mr. Wilson specially adverted to the sky- 
lark and nightingale. The essayist suggested that the Institute 
should take a special interest in the disposal of the grant about to be 
given by the Government for aiding the introduction of new animals 
into the colony, and give the movement its countenance and advice. 

A discussion ensued, in which Dr. Iffla, Dr. Knaggs, the Rev. Mr. 
Bleasdale, Dr. Eades, Mr. Hough, Mr. Elliot, &c, took part. 

Information was derived that many birds, as the linnet, bullfinch, 
thrush, and others, could be safely brought here from the mother 

The Rev. Mr. Bleasdale moved, and Mr. Acheson seconded, a vote 
of thanks to Mr. Wilson for his communication, which was 
unanimously carried. 

Mr. Wilson then moved, — 

" That a Committee be appointed to consider the question of the 
" introduction of the British Song Bird, as contained in the paper 
"just read, and recommend to this Society the steps desirable to 
" be taken. The Committee to consist of the President, Dr. Knaggs, 
" the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale, James Smith, Esq., the mover, and the 
" honorary secretary." 

This was seconded by Dr. Knaggs, and carried. 

From the lateness of the hour, Mr. A. K. Smith's paper an- 
nounced for this meeting was postponed, and it was suggested that 
the Council should appoint an extra evening to receive the arrears 
of papers in the Secretary's hands. 

15th July, 1857. 

Extka Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair. 
A paper was read by Alexander Kennedy Smith, Esq., C.E., " On 
the Application of Machinery and Mechanics to Agriculture." 

xxxviii Minutes of Meetings. 

A discussion ensued, in which Mr. Stevenson, Mr. Skilling, Mr. 
Savage, Dr. Macadam and others took part. 

Dr. Mackenna moved a vote of thanks to Mr. A. K. Smith, for 
his paper. This was seconded by Thomas Skilling, Esq., and 

5th August, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair- 

His Excellency Sir Henry Barkly, K.C.B., Patron of the Institute, 
was present. 

The minutes of the general monthly meeting, held on the 1st of 
July, and those of the extra meeting, held on the 15th of the same 
month, were read and confirmed. 

Several recently elected members were introduced by the President. 

A ballot was held and the following gentlemen were elected 
ordinary members of the Institute : — 

The Hon. John B. Bennett, Esq., M.L.C., St. Kilda. 
George Dill, Esq., Collins Street. 

Thomas Francis, Esq., Watchmaker, 130 Brunswick Street, 

D. A. Hughes, Esq-, M.L.A., Prahran. 

E. J. Thomas, Esq., 102 Lonsdale Street West. 
Joseph Oppenheimer, Esq., Merchant, Melbourne. 

Rev. Q. O. Vance, M.A., Oxon., Rector of the Geelong Grammar 

D. Baillie, Esq., Contractor, 120 Flinders Lane East, Melbourne. 
Alexander John Skene, Esq., District Surveyor, Geelong. 
James Bonwick, Esq., Inspector of Denominational Schools, Kew. 
George Hicks, Esq., Commercial Editor, Argus office. 
A. B. Orlebar, Esq., M.A., Inspector of National Schools. 
W. Lockhart Morton, Esq., Agricultural Machine Maker, Elizabeth 

Francis A. Corbett, Esq., Census Office, Melbourne. 
Thomas Belt, Esq., Meteorological Observer, Mount Egerton. 
Wm. Henry Ritchie, Esq., Patent Agent, Chancery Lane. 
Edwin Jones, Esq., Mathematical Instrument Maker, Melbourne. 
The Hon. John O'Shanassy, Esq., M.L.A., Melbourne. 
The Hon. Daniel Joseph Tierney, Esq., M.L.C., Melbourne. 
Wm. E. Stanbridge, Esq., Wombat, Hepburn. 
James B. Houghton, Esq., Merchant, 71 Flinders Lane West. 
Paul Howard Macgillivray, Esq., A.M., Surgeon, Williamstown. 

The honorary secretary laid upon the table the following contri- 

Minutes of Meetings. xxxix 

butions, viz. : — " The Meteorological Table of Tasmania, for June," 
by the Royal Society of Tasmania ; the first and second numbers of 
the " Sydney Magazine of Science and Art," and the first number of 
the " Month" by the publishers. 

Dr. Ferdinand Mueller, the Government Botanist, then read a 
paper, being " An Account of some new Australian Plants," with an 
exhibition of Specimens. The Plants produced had been collected 
principally during the Northern Expedition, and included several 
New Genera. 

Dr. Wilkie, Vice-President, having taken the Chair, Professor Wil- 
son read a paper on " Life Insurance." 

A short discussion followed, in which His Excellency and others 
took part. 

A paper was read by Robert Savage, Esq., " On the Advantages 
to be derived from the use of Machinery in Victoria." 

George Frederick Verdon, Esq., gave notice of motion, for next 
monthly meeting, as follows : — 

" That it is expedient to organize a system of combined action 
amongst all the Scientific Societies throughout the Colony." 

" That, to effect this object, it is advisable to prepare a series of 

propositions affirming the necessity of, and setting forth the advan- 
" tages to be derived from uniformity of procedure, and stating 
" generally the principles upon which the union should be based." 

" That such propositions shall be prepared by a Committee, to 

" consist of and having been approved by the Society shall 

"be submitted to the various Mechanics' and other kindred 
" Institutions in Victoria, for adoption." 

2nd September, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the previous monthly meeting were read and con- 
firmed and several new members were introduced to the Institute by 
the Chairman. 

A ballot was held and the following gentlemen were duly elected 
ordinary members of the Institute, viz. : — 

Alexander Thomson, Esq., M.D., Mayor of Geelong. 

Thomas Mason, Esq., Chairman of the Municipal Council, Wil- 

Captain H. Butler Stoney, H. M. 40th Regiment. 
William Hosking, Esq., Mining Engineer, 100 Brunswick Street, 

William Weire, Esq., Town Clerk, Geelong. 
William Randle, Esq., Railway Contractor, Melbourne. 
James Robertson, Esq., M.A., M.D., 205 Swanston Street. 

xl Minutes of Meetings. 

Frederick A. Stratford Esq., Sub-manager of the E. S. and A. C. 
Bank, Williamstown. 

Count John Dembinski, Melbourne. 

William Wright, Esq., Railway Contractor, Melbourne. 

Lieut. C. A. D. Pasco, R.N., Resident Magistrate, Williamstown. 

Alexander Fyfe, Esq., M.L.A., Geelong. 

Alexander Morrison, Esq., M.A., Principal of the Scotch College, 

Robert Campbell, Esq., Merchant, 172 Collins Street, East. 

William Hamilton, Esq., Teacher, John Knox's School, Melbourne. 

Lieut. William Dowman, H. M. 40th Regiment. 

Charles Broad, Esq., Senior Assistant Immigration Officer, 

W. F. Preshaw, Esq., Surgeon and Coroner, Castlemaine. 

— Migeod, Esq., Physician, Bourke Street, East. 

The honorary secretary laid upon the table two contributions, viz., 
Abstract of Meteorological Observations, taken in Victoria, during 
the quarter ending 30th June, 1857, by the Government, and a Copy 
of the first newspaper printed in Port Phillip (the Melbourne Advertiser) 
by R W. Wrede, Esq. 

A paper was read by W. A. Zeal, Esq - , C.E., on " Railway Gra- 
dients." This paper was illustrated by diagrams, and the thanks 
of the Institute were awarded to Mr. Zeal for his interesting com- 

William Blandowski, Esq., then read a paper, containing an ac- 
count of his " Recent Discoveries in Natural History on the Lower 
Murray." The paper was accompanied with several elaborate port- 
folios of sketches of objects of natural history, taken by the author 
during his sojourn in the district named. A specimen of the Austra- 
lian Boa Constrictor was exhibited. 

An animated discussion followed the reading of the paper. 

Thanks were voted to Mr. Blandowski for his communication. 

From the lateness of the hour, Dr. Mueller, with the consent of 
the members, postponed the reading of his paper on " A general in- 
troduction of useful Plants into Victoria.': The paper, however, to 
take precedence at the next general meeting. 

For the same reason, George Frederick Verdon, Esq., postponed 
the moving of his resolutions on the union of Scientific Societies in 
the Colony. 

The Rev. J. J. Bleasdale gave notice of motion to the following 
effect : — 

" That the Institute apply to the Honorable the President of the 
" Board of Land and Works, for a general order to enable the Institute 
" to obtain from the national collections, at present located in the Uni- 
" versity, any specimens necessary for illustrating subjects treated on 
" in papers read before the Institute ; provided, that such specimens 
" or preparations be transferred on the day of meeting at the expense 

Minutes of Meetings. xli 

" of the Institute and returned on the following day at hours conve- 
u venient to the Curator of the Museum.— And further, that the 
" specimens sought for, be of such a nature, as shall not be injured 
by such removals if conducted with care." 

25th September, 1857. 

Special General Meeting. 

David E. Wilkie, Esq., M.D„ Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The object of this meeting being convened, was to consider the 

draft of new rules drawn up by the Council, and with the view of 

obtaining the sanction of the members generally to the adoption of 

the code submitted. A copy (printed) of the proposed rules had 

been sent to each member of the Institute for perusal. 

The proposed rules were read by the honorary secretary, and 
discussed seriatim. 

Several alterations were made, and the rules, fifty-eight in number, 
were then adopted. 

The rides were ordered to be printed, as amended and distributed 
to the members. (See copy of rules in appendix.) 

Professor Wilson gave notice of motion for the next monthly 
meeting to the effect — 

" That a Committee be appointed to wait on Her Majesty's Govern- 
ment, and take such other steps as they may deem expedient, for 
promoting the establishment of an Astronomical, Magnetical, and 
Meteorological Observatory, on a scale commensurate with the 
importance of the colony. The Committee to consist of the Hon. 
Capt. Clarke, R.E., R. L. J. Ellery, Esq., R. Brough Smyth, Esq., 
Professor Neumayer, and the mover." 
The Institute separated at near midnight. 

30th September, 1857. 

Monthly Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

His Excellency the Governor was present. 

The Minutes of the previous meeting, and of the Special General 
Meeting, held on the 25th of September, were read and confirmed. 

New members, present for the first time, were introduced by the 

The following gentlemen were duly elected ordinary members of 
the Institute, by ballot, viz. : — 

The Hon. William Roope, Esq., M.L.C., Geelong. 

The Hon. Robert 0. Hope, Esq., M.L.C., Melbourne. 

W. Wade, Esq., Agriculturist, Bedford, Kew. 

The Rev. Adam Cairns, D.D., Melbourne. 

xlii Minutes of Meetings. 

The Rev. J. Divorty, AM., South Yarra. 

S. W. McGowan, Esq., General Superintendent of Electric 

Dr. James Macrae, Napier Street, Collingwood. 

Thomas Chirnside, Esq., Werribee. 

John Thomson, Esq,, 39 Collins Street, West. 

Richard Nash, Esq., Acting Colonial Storekeeper. 

Matthew William Taylor, Esq., Solicitor, Collins Street, West. 

Dr. Barry, Gardiner's Creek Road. 

Captain R. B. Matthews, Melbourne. 

Barnard Matthews, Esq., Melbourne. 

Allan Spowers, Esq., Argus office. 

James H. Dow, Esq., Foundry, Flinders Street. 

Alfred Ross, Esq,, Melbourne. 

James Gill, Esq., Melbourne. 

Wm. Paterson Muir, Esq., Flinders Street. 

— Dauglish, Esq., of Messrs. Raleigh & Co. 

James Jackson, Esq., Engineer, North Melbourne. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, 
viz., " Description of a Valuator of Gold with quartz, by John 
Phillips, Esq., C.E.; "Papers on an alleged new Motive Power," by 
N. L. Kentish, Esq.; " Meteorological Table, for July, 1857" by the 
Royal Society of Tasmania; Parts 1st, 2nd and 3rd, of the "Tran- 
sactions of the Cambridge Philosophical Society" (Vol. IX.) from that 

The Secretary announced the publication of Part 1st, of Volume 
II., of the " Transactions of the Institute," as also of the new Code 
of Rules. 

Mr. Verdon brought forward his motion bearing on the Union of 
Scientific Societies. A discussion ensued, in which Professor 
Hearn, Drs. Maclean, Eades, Macadam, and others, took part. 
Ultimately the motion was carried, as far as the appointment of a 
Committee to enquire into the feasability of the project was 

The Rev. Mr. Bleasdale's motion, in reference to the obtaining 1 
of Specimens from the National Collections, was carried unani- 

Professor Wilson's motion was carried. The Committee ap- 
pointed to consist of the Hon. Captain Clarke, R.E., Mr. Archer, 
Mr. Orlebar, the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale, Dr. Howitt, Mr. Edward 
Wilson, and the mover. 

Professor Wilson read letters approving of, and strongly urging 
the subject of the motion, from the President of the Royal 
Society' of London, from the Rev. Mr. Robinson, and from Lord 

Mr. Edward Wilson gave notice of motion, to the following 
effect, — 

Minutes of Meetings. xliii 

tl That Dr. Barry and Allan Spowers, Esq., be added to the 
"Committee appointed to facilitate the introduction of the 
" British Song Bird." 

Dr. Mueller read a paper on a general introduction of useful 
plants into Victoria. 

Wm. Edward Stanbridge, Esq., of Wombat, read a paper on 
" The Astronomy and Mythology of the Aborigines of Victoria.' 

Discussion followed the reading of both papers. 

The Secretary announced that, in accordance with the new 
rules, the future meetings of the Institute would take place every 
three weeks, and that the hour would be altered from 8 o'clock to 
half-past 7 o'clock. 

21st October, 1857. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed. 

Recently elected members, present for the first time, were 
introduced to the Institute by the Chairman. 

The Secretary read the names of seventeen candidates for mem- 
bership, to be balloted for at the succeeding General Meeting-, 
in accordance with the mode of election laid down in the new 

The Secretary read a communication from Dr. Frederick Tam- 
nau, jun., of Berlin, in which that gentleman solicited Australian 
Mineralogical Specimens in exchange for a collection of Specimens 
illustrative of the Mineralogy of Europe. 

In consideration of the Institute not yet being- in a position to 
respond to Dr. Tamnau's request, the Secretary was in- 
structed to forward a copy of the communication to the Curator 
of the national collections at present located in the University. 

Mr. Rawlinson, on behalf of Mr. Verdon, requested permission 
for the postponement of the appointment of a Committee to con- 
sider the proposed Union of Scientific Societies throughout the 
colony, which was acceded to. 

Mr. Edward Wilson moved that Dr. Barry and Allan Spowers, 
Esq., be added to the Committee appointed to facilitate the intro- 
duction of the " British Song Bird," which was seconded, and 
carried unanimously. 

Dr. Wilkie gave notice of motion to the following effect,' — 

" That a Committee be appointed to consider and report on the 
" practicability of fitting out in Victoria a Geographical Expe- 
" dition, for the purpose of carrying out the great idea of the 
"lamented Leichhardt, of exploring the vast interior of Australia 
" from east to west, and for the purpose, if possible, of gathering 

xliv Minutes of Meetings. 

'■ some tidings of the fate of Leichhardt and bis party. The pro- 
" posed expedition to start from Curtis Bay on the east coast and 
" to make a direct course westward in the latitude of the tropic of 
" Capricorn to Shark Bay on the west coast, embracing at the 
" same time, any fitting opportunity of exploring the interior both 
" to the north and south of this line." 

Mr. Clarson gave notice of motion to the following effect, — 

" 1st. That the Council of the Institute, having obtained per- 
" mission, on the 29th of August, from the President of the Board 
" of Land and Works, that Mr. Blandowski should be allowed to 
"prepare a paper, to be read before the Institute, containing a 
" short statement of his recent discoveries on the Lower Murray 
" river, and Mr. Blandowski having accordingly read such paper at 
" the monthly meeting of the Institute held on the 2nd of Sep- 
tember last; and the Council of the Institute having, at a meet- 
"ing held on the 14th of October thereafter, resolved to publish 
" such paper in the forthcoming volume of the " Transactions," 
"and having voted also the^um of £30 for engraving the plates 
" to accompany such paper, and Mr. Blandowski having entered 
"into an agreement with an engraver for this purpose, and the 
"plates being already in hand; this meeting regrets that the 
" Council at an extraordinary meeting, held on the 20th of October, 
" came to the determination to rescind their former resolution to 
" publish Mr. Blandowski's paper, and to cancel the vote of £30 
" granted for the purpose of eng-raving these plates, without as- 
signing other reason to Mi-. Blandowski than that they now 
" consider the above paper as the property of the Government." 

2nd. " That this meeting considers that the paper read by Mr. 
" Blandowski must in accordance with the rules be considered as 
" the property of the Institute ; and in justice to Mr. Blandowski, 
" who was requested by the Council to prepare the above paper for 
' ' the Institute, they recommend the Council to publish the paper 
"in the forthcoming volume of the "Transactions," in accordance 
"with their first resolution." 

Sizar Elliot, Esq., read a paper on " The Preservation of Animal 
Substances." illustrated by specimens of preserved meats, which 
had been kept in a proper state of preservation for ten years. 

Dr. Eades explained to the Institute his inability to read his 
paper on " The distinctive characters of the Diamond and Crys- 
tallized Boron," from the circumstance of his not having at his 
command Crystals of Boron, but he hoped to be able at an early 
period to present his communication. 

Mr. James Jackson read a paper on " Railways in Victoria." 

The Secretary repeated the announcement of the publication of 
Past 1st, Volume 2nd, of the "Transactions of the Institute." 

Minutes of Meetings. xlv 

11th November, 1857. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

Dr. Wilkie, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The Minutes of the previous meeting' were read and confirmed. 

Several new members were .introduced to the Institute by the 


Tbe Secretary read the name of one candidate for membership, 
viz., Richard Gibson, Esq., Road Engineer, Tarraville, proposed by 
Frederick Acheson, Esq., C.E., and seconded by Dr. Macadam. 

The following- gentlemen were elected, by ballot, ordinary 
members of the Institute. 

John Wilkins, Esq., M.B., J.P., District Surgeon and Coroner, 

Joseph Geary, Esq., Inspector of Denominational Schools, 

Arthur Davitt, Esq., Principal of the National and Model Train- 
ing Schools. 
Patrick Whyte, Esq., B.A., of T.C.D., National and Model 

Training Schools. 
Henry Elder, Esq., Jeweller, Great Bourke Street, East. 
Robert MacKay, Esq,, Tide Inspector, H. M. Customs, Wil- 
J. S. Mackenzie, Esq., H. M. Customs, Williamstown. 
Joseph Bosisto, Esq., Chemist, Richmond. 
Robert Wharton, Esq., J.P., 3 Queen Street, Melbourne. 
Lieutenant W. C. Bancroft, A.D.C.. H. M. 16th Regiment, 

Richard Thomas Tracy, Esq., M.D., Brunswick Street, Col- 

Robert Graham Gilmore, Esq., of Messrs. G. W. Cole & Co., 

Merchants, Melbourne. 
Lewis Vieusseux, Esq., Principal, Ladies' College, Victoria 

Parade, Melbourne. 
John Cairns, Esq., Merchant, 21 Queen Street, Melbourne. 
Thomas Bibbs, Esq., Draughtsman, Government Survey 

The following Committees were re-appointed, viz. : — 
The " Museum" Committee ; the Committee for " Superintend- 
ing the introduction of the British Song Bird into Victoria, and 
the Murray Cod fish into the Yarra;" the " Mining" Committee, 
and the Committee to carry out the " Establishment of an 
Astronomical and Magnetical Observatory." 

The name of the Rev. J. J. Bleasdale was added to the Museum 

G. F. Verdon, Esq., through Thomas E. Rawlinson, Esq., nomi- 
nated as a Committee on the subject of the " Union of the Scien- 

xlvi Minutes of Meetings. 

tific Societies of the Colony/' — Drs. Eades, Macadam, Maclean, 
and Messrs. Macgillivray, Sinnett, Ellery, Rawlinson and Verdon, 
and the Rev. William Henderson. 

The Committee was agreed to. 

The Secretary read a communication from Mr. Clarson, with- 
drawing - the notice of motion standing - in his name. 

Dr. Wilkie having vacated the chair, which was taken by Dr. 
Iffla, brought forward his motion on the subject of Australian Ex- 
ploration, and nominated as a Committee, the following - gentle- 
men, members of the Institute : — The Hon. Captain Clarke, R.E., 
President; the Hon. W. C. Haines, M.L.A.; the Hon. John 
O'Shanassy, M.L.A. ; the Hon. John Hodgson, M.L.A. ; the 
Hon. the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly ; the Hon. R. 
C. Hope, M.L.C. ; Professors Wilson, Irving, McCoy and 
Hearn ; Drs. Mueller, Iffla, Macadam, Gillbee, Knaggs, McLean 
and Turnbull; the Rev. Messrs. Bleasdale and Morison; Professor 
Neumayer ; Messrs. Selwyn, Edward Wilson, Rawlinson, Blan- 
dowski, Knight, Dobree, Bonwick, Elliot, Bland, Farewell and 
Acheson, and the mover, with power to add to their number. 

Dr. Wilkie, in bringing forward his motion, stated that the' 
geographical exploration of the interior was a subject of great 
national importance. On scientific grounds it was peculiarly the 
province of the Institute to promote this great object. The pro- 
posed search for Leichhardt would, he felt assured, command the 
warmest sympathy of the members and the public. In no part 
of the world was there so wide an extent of available country for 
the future settlement of the surplus population of the old world. 
The exploration of the interior was, therefore, fraught with the 
most important results. He referred to the indomitable courage 
displayed by Dr. Livingston in Africa and to his extraordinary 
success as an explorer. He referred, further, to ihe valuable re- 
sults of the exploring expeditions of Sturt, Leichhardt, Mitchell, and 
Gregory. He recommended that the proposed expedition should 
follow the northern boundary of Sturt's desert, which, he believed 
would be found not far north of the tropic of Capricorn ; the beau- 
tiful country on the Victoria river, near this latitude, favored this 
opinion. There was every probability of gaining some tidings 
respecting Leichhardt's fate by exploring this route. Six thousand 
pounds would be necessary to organize and maintain a suitable ex- 
ploring party for a period of two years, which would suffice for 
the proposed objects. New South Wales had fitted out many ex- 
ploring expeditions ; South Australia and Swan River had also had 
their exploring parties. The Royal Geographical Society of London 
and the Home Government had contributed large sums for the same 
end. Victoria, alone, had hitherto seemed to forget the claims of 
science and the future interests of Australia, but ought, from her 
unexampled wealth, and her large and rapidly increasing popula- 

Minutes of Meetings. xlvii 

tion, to take the lead in geographical discovery. The present was 
the most auspicious occasion for Victoria to contribute her share in 
this honorable work. Her Majesty's Representative, Sir Henry 
Barkly, was the friend and patron of science and he ventured to 
hope that His Excellency would aid the cause of geographical 
discovery. Sir W. Denison was at present organizing an explor- 
ing party in search of Leichhardt. This expedition being equipped 
for six months only, ought not to interfere with the Victorian 
expedition, which was intended to embrace far wider objects. He 
had no doubt that Victoria would now endeavor to emulate the 
noble example of the other colonies. If the proposed expedition 
should be successful in exploring the central regions of Australia 
from east to west, this disinterested contribution of Victoria to the 
cause of science would be honorably remembered in Australian 

Dr. Wilkie's motion was seconded by Mr. Dobree. 

Dr. Macadam moved an amendment to the effect, — 

" That the subject be postponed until the results of the expe- 
" dition now being organised by the Government of New South 
" Wales for a similar purpose should be known." 

This was seconded by J. D. Pinnock, Esq. 

The Rev. Mr. Bleasdale moved, as a second amendment, — 

" That the Philosophical Institute appoint a Committee to devise 
" the best means to co-operate with the promoters in New South 
" Wales of the search for Leichhardt, and the exploration of the 
" interior of Australia, in order to enable the party to pursue their 
u explorations entirely across the Continent of Australia, as near 
" to the Tropic of Capricorn as possible." 

This was seconded by Dr. Mueller. 

Dr. Gillbee moved a third amendment to the effect, — 

" That the discussion be postponed till the next Ordinary 
" Meeting," which was seconded by Mr. Broad. 

The amendments were severally put and negatived. The original 
motion was carried, as also the Committee, nominated by the 

The Secretary read a communication from J. Brache, Esq., C.E., 
requesting permission to give notice of motion of his intention to 
bring- forward the report of the "Mining Committee of the 

W. Blandowski, Esq., read a paper on " Extensive Infusoria De- 
" posits in the Malee Scrub, near Swan Hill, on the Lower Murray, 
" River, in Victoria." As also, " Observations on the Existence 
" of Fucoidse in a Fossil State in the Silurian Rocks near Mel- 
" bourne, as in the neighborhood of the Botanic Gardens." Mr. 
Blandowski exhibited specimens and drawings. 

Thomas E. Rawlinson, Esq., C.E., read a paper entitled, 
11 Observations on the Saw-fish, with Young, taken in Hobson's 

xlviii Minutes of Meetings. 

" Bay, near Gellibrand's Point, in October, 1857." He exhibited 
specimens of the young, and presented them to the Museum of the 

25th November, 1857. 
Extra Meeting. 
The Hon. Capt. Clarke, R.E., President, in the chair. 

His Excellency Sir Henry Barkly, K.C.B., was. present. 

The Minutes of the previous Ordinary Meeting- were read and 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following- contributions : — 
1st. " Half-yearly Report of the Superintendent of the Astrono- 
mical Observatory, ending 30th June, 1857," by the Government, 
2nd. " Nos. 47, 48, 49, and 50, of the Quarterly Journal of the 
Geological Society of London," presented by the Society. 3rd. 
" Meteorological Tables for August, September, and October, 
1857," by the Royal Society of Tasmania. 4th. "Abstract of 
Meteorological Observations taken in Victoria during the quarter 
ending 30th September, 1857," by the Government. 

Dr. Ferdinand Mueller read a paper entitled, "An Historical 
Review of the Explorations of Australia." 

An animated discussion ensued, in which His Excellency, the 
President Captain Clarke, Mr. Blandowski, Dr. Mueller, and 
others, took part. 

Thomas Belt, Esq., Meteorological Observer, Mount Egerton, 
read a paper on " An Enquiry into the cause of Whirlwinds." 

A discussion took place, in which Professor Wilson and others 
expressed their views. 

The Secretary then read a communication from the Rev. Julian 
Edmund Woods, Catholic Missionary, Penola, entitled, " Observa- 
tions on some Metamorphic Rocks in South Australia." 

The Pi-esident announced that this meeting was the concluding- 
one of the present session 1 for the "reading of papers; that the 
General Meeting of the Institute for receiving the Annual 
Report would be held on Monday, the 7th of December following, 
and that the Meetings for Ordinary Business would be resumed in 
March ensuing. 

7th December, 1857. 

The General Meeting. 

Professor Wilson, Vice-President, in the chair. 

Several members, recently elected, were introduced to the 

Minutes of Meetings. xlix 

The business, as set forth in the notice paper, was " For the 
purpose of receiving from the Council the Report of the Pro- 
ceedings of the Institute during the past year, embodying 
the Balance Sheet, duly audited, and a statement of the 
present position of the Institute." 

The Honorary Secretary (Dr. Macadam) read the Third Annual 
Report of the Institute as drawn up by the Council. 

Professor Wilson moved, — 

" That the Report now read be received and printed." 

This was seconded by Dr. Mackenna, and unanimously carried. 
(See Annual Report for 1857 in the following- pages.) 

The Balance Sheet, audited by Charles Farewell, Esq., and 
Francis T. Gell, Esq., showing a sum to the credit of the Institute 
on the 1st of December, 1857, of eleven hundred and ninety 
pounds, fourteen shillings and eleven pence sterling, was also read 
by the Secretary, received by the meeting, and ordered to be 
printed. (See Balance Sheet for 1857, p. liv.) 

The Treasurer's and Secretary's accounts of petty expenses were 
laid upon the table. 

Professor Wilson having vacated the chair, which was taken by 
Dr. Iffla, read the Report of the " Observatory" Committee, which 
was received by the meeting, and ordered to lie printed in the 
"Transactions" of the Institute. (See Reports of Committees.) 

The Institute then separated. 

21st December, 1857. 

Special General Meeting. 

Dr. Wilkie, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The object of the meeting, as set forth in the notice paper, was 
to receive the Report of the Committee appointed to consider and 
report on the practicability of fitting- out in Victoria a geographi- 
cal expedition, &c. ; as also for the confirmation of the Minutes of 
the meetings held on the 25th of November and 7th of December. 

The Minutes of the last ordinary meeting, and of the recent 
general meeting were read by the Secretary and confirmed. • 

From the attendance [of members being limited, no doubt, be- 
cause of the season of the year and the lengthened notification 
for general meetings required by the rules, Mr. Elliot proposed, 
" That the meeting should adjourn till the following evening, and 
that the Secretary be instructed to give publicity to the circum- 
stance by public advertisement." 

The motion was seconded and carried. 

1 Minutes of Meetings. 

22nd December, 1857. 

Adjourned Special General Meeting. 

Dr. Wilkie, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The Secretary read the Eeport drawn up by the " Exploration" 

A discussion ensued, in which Messrs. Bonwick, Rawlinson, 
Acheson, Blandowski, and Drs. Eades and Macadam with others 
took part ; after which the Report as read, was received, and a 
Committee appointed to carry out the objects contemplated. (See 
Report of Exploration Committee.) 

The Institute then separated. 


Third Report of the Council of the Philosophical Institute of 
Victoria, presented to the Members at the General Meeting, on the 
1th of December, 1857. 

The Council, in submitting- their Third Annual Report, congra- 
tulate the members on the continued prosperity of the Institute. 

The position and prospects of the institute are highly satisfac- 
tory for the present and most encouraging for the future. One 
of the gratifying features in its history during the past year has 
been the great extension of the roll of membership ; the number 
of members having more than doubled since the date of the last 
annual report. Since that time 155 gentlemen have been elected 
by ballot Ordinary Members and one gentleman as a Correspond- 
ing Member of the Institute. The Council feel justified in refer- 
ring to this as an indication of the amount of public confidence 
reposed in the Institute and they have no doubt but that many 
of the newly-elected members will, from their scientific 
attainments, prove valuable accessions to the Institute. 

Another circumstance indicative of the increased appreciation 
of the objects of the Institute, was the large number of papers 
presented on subjects legitimately within the province of the In- ' 
stitute. The Council refer with great pleasure to their experience 
in this particular, as it removed a difficulty that has in great 
measure heretofore existed, and they trust that their successors 
in office will have their duties lightened, and their anxieties re- 
lieved in a similar manner. The Council have, with much delibe- 
ration, exercised their discretion in selecting for publication in 
the "Transactions" of the Institute such of these papers as 
appeared in their judgment to be most original and likely to prove 
most useful. 

The Council recommend to the consideration of their successors 
in office, the system recently adopted, of printing the " Transac- 
tions" at periods not exceeding six months, since, by this practice 
the proceedings of the Institute receive earlier publicity. 

Another feature, not less gratifying, consists in the numbers of 
contributions forwarded to the Institute from kindred societies. 
The Council have placed themselves in communication with the 
leading British and Foreign Scientific Associations, with the view 
of exchanging copies of their " Transactions," and many of these 
have already evinced a ready reciprocity. The Council look for- 
ward with hope to the time when this element of mutual benefit 
will yield the most beneficial results in forming the nucleus of a 
valuable scientific library of reference for the members. It may 

lii Annual Report. 

here, however, he stated that the Institute is as yet urprovided with 
accommodation for their property. This is matter of regret, as 
the Council are aware that if such were supplied, many valuable 
contributions of specimens would be presented to the Institute. 
This deficiency is more to be regretted, as some collections pre- 
sented by members cannot be taken possession of until suitable 
accommodation is provided for their reception. This subject has 
indeed, for a long time, engaged the earnest consideration of the 
Council. They have, in the meantime, applied to the Government 
for a site on which to erect a suitable building for the Institute, 
and so favorably has their application been received by the Honor- 
able the President of the Board of Land and Works, that they 
were invited by that gentleman to name trustees, and give other 
details. This has been done, and the Council anxiously wait to 
receive intimation of the site bestowed,* when they would recom- 
mend to their successors in office to lose no time in erecting such 
accommodation as would serve the immediate wants of the Insti- 
tute, with the view of future extension. 

For this purpose there is at present available a large sum, which 
will be further augmented by the subscriptions of the members 
now becoming due. 

The financial condition of the Institute is in the highest degree 
satisfactory. From the necessary expenditure in the printing of 
the "Transactions" for the years 1856 and 1857, this result would 
have been otherwise, had not the Government with a spirit of 
liberality, placed upon the Estimates the sum of one thousand 
pounds sterling, which amount has been received by the Treasurer. 
The Council refer with pleasure to this grant made to the Institute 
by the Government and Legislature, and they feel assured that 
their earnest desire to render the Institute worthy of such 
encouragement will continue to be appreciated. It will be grati- 
fying to scientific men in all parts of the world to observe that in 
Victoria the claims of science are not overlooked. Indeed, it is 
worthy of notice that the present era is remarkable for the high 
appreciation and ample encouragement generally afforded to 
scientific and learned societies. 

Varions committees have been nominated for the purpose of 
enquiring into and carrying out subjects of local and general 
interest. Among other results, it may be stated that arrange- 
ments have been made for the reception of an extensive collection 
of British Song Birds, presented to the Institute by an English 
Lady, in furtherance of the project brought under 'your notice in a 
paper read on the subject of " the introduction of such birds into 

* A site has, since the reading of this report, been granted for the purposes of 
the Institute by His Excellency the Governor in Council. (See Correspon- 
dence, &c, in the " ArPEN'mx.") 

Annual Report. liii 

the colony." An aviary in a suitable locality (the Botanic Gar- 
dens) is in process of construction, and the arrangements have 
been placed under the superintendence of an efficient sub-com- 

An active sub-committee was appointed to revise the rules of 
the Institute, and after several meeting's a code of rules was sub- 
mitted to the Council and approved of. At a Special General 
Meeting- the code was received and adopted with slight alterations. 
The rules were afterwards printed, and placed in the hands of the 

The subject of the obtaining of a Royal Charter has from time 
to time engaged the attention of the Institute, but the Council 
regret to state that no definite steps have as yet been taken 
towards this object. They consider, however, that the period has 
now arrived, when an immediate application with this view should 
be made to Her Most Gracious Majestj r the Queen, and they would 
particularly recommend to their successors in office the carrying 
out of this desideratum. 

Your Council feel that they would be but imperfectly perform- 
ing their duty, did they fad to bring prominently before the Insti- 
tute in this report, the valuable services of the Secretary, Dr. 
Macadam ; services which, in their opinion, have greatly contri- 
buted to the success of the Institute ; and, when it is further con- 
sidered how much valuable time the Secretary has given to his 
gratuitous labours, they feel that justice demands this acknow- 
ledgment at their hands. 

In thus submitting their Annual Report or Resume of the pro- 
ceedings for the past year, the Council would again congratulate 
the members on the prosperous career which the Institute has 
enjoyed, and the prospect of increasing usefulness which is ex- 
panding before it. They would strongly urge the members to 
a continuance of that individual influence and exertion which alone 
will enable the Institute to maintain and strengthen the position it 
now occupies. And, in now resigning the the trust committed to 
them, the Council sympathise with their successors in office on the 
important duties which will devolve on them when energetically 
carrying out the noble objects of the Institute, and rendering it, 
in the fullest sense, a " National Institution," and an honor to the 
land we live in. 



The Treasurer in Account with 
1st January, 1857 to 

Keceipts. £ s. d. 

To Government Grant in Aid 1,000 

„ Subscriptions for 1857, 186 at £2 2s. . . . £390 12 
„ Do., Half-yearly, 7 at £1 Is 7 7 

— — — — 397 19 

„ Entrance Fees, 7 at £2 2s. 14 14 

„ Life Subscriptions — 

A. K. Smith, Esq 10 

J. Macadam, Esq., M.D. . . . 10 

S. Iffla, Esq,, J.P 10 

Rev. J. J. Bleasdale 10 


„ Subscriptions for 1856, 20 at £2 2s 42 

„ Sale of Transactions to Dr. P. Mueller 5 

„ Interest on Bank Account (Sept. 30th) . . . . 3 4 

Cr. Balance 1st Jan., 1857 

1,676 19 1 
M. H. IRVING, Treasurer. ' 



The Philosophical Institute of Victoria. 
1st December, 1857. 

By Expenses of Management in 1856, paid in 1857 
Expenses of Museum Committee . 
Walsh, Messenger 
Franklyn, Printing Circulars. 
Secretary, Petty Cash . 
Jones, Copying Report of Council . 

,, Publication of Transactions for 1855-1856, 300 copies- 
Goodhugh and Hough, Printing .... 

Detmold, Binding ...... 

De Gruchy and Leigh, Lithographing . 

,, Expenses of Management during 1857 — 

Secretary, Petty Cash ...... 

Treasurer, do. ....... 

Glasborow, Messenger ...... 

Franklyn, Printing Circulars .... 

Do., Advertising ....... 

Mechanics' Institute, Hall for Meetings from July 
to December, 1857 ...... 

Fairfax, Printing New Rules ..... 

,, Expenses of Furniture — 

Thwaites for Ballot Box 

Paxton and Allan, Cabinet 

s. d. 

£6 19 


3 2 
2 10 



20 11 8 
137 7 6 

99 7 



23 14 

1 10 


18 16 

2 2 


Grants to Committees — 

E. Wilson, Chairman Song Bird Committee . 
D. E. Wilkie, Chairman Exploration Committee . 
Secretary, Expenses incidental to the dinner given 
to His Excellency the Governor 

Publication of Transactions for 1857, Part L, 500 copies 
Goodhugh and Hough, Printing . 

Detmold, Binding 

Becker, Lithographing ..... 
Hamel and Locher, do. and Printing . 
Friend, Printing ...... 

Illustrations for Transactions for 1857, Part II.- 
Grosse, Wood Engraving .... 


17 7 

es — 


6 5 


11 15 



131 15 6 

7 2 

52 7 

107 6 

Cr., Balance, 1st Dec, 1857 1,190 14 11 

We have examined the accounts and vouchers of 
the Treasurer of the Philosophical Institute, 
and find them to be correct, the balance to the 
credit of the Institute on the 1st Dec, 1857, 
being £1,190 14s. lid. 

£1,676 19 1 

FRAS. T. GELL, > Auditors. 



A Public Meeting was held yesterday evening, at the Mechanics' Institute, 
for the purpose of taking into consideration a series of resolutions to he sub- 
mitted by several members of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria, with a 
view of securing the co-operation of the public in carrying out the design of 
the Institute, to fit out a Victorian Expedition for the exploration of the 

Over the platform, at the upper end of the room, was a map of the 
whole Australian continent, executed on calico, and occupying some 150 
superficial feet. By this means the different routes for exploring parties 
were readily illustrated. The number of persons present was very great, 
but that it was not even greater, was most probably due to the excessive 
heat, and violent dust-storm which prevailed about 7 o'clock, and prevented 
many from venturing out. 

The chair was taken by Captain Clarke, who read the notice convening 
the meeting. The Chairman said that the immediate object of this meeiing 
was, to consider the propriety of supporting a proposition recently made by 
Dr. W'lkie to the Philosophical Institute, viz., to make an exploration of 
a portion of the interior by a preliminary party, and endeavor 
also to trace the fate of the unfortunate but gallant Leich- 
hardt. Besides these reasons were others, which rendered the exploration 
of Central Australia very important. It was true it could bring to this 
colony but little territorial increase, but the further they got away Vrom the 
Murray to the interior, the more valuable their land became. The Philoso- 
phical Institute, as au organised body devoting itself to questions of this 
kind, was the most fitted to bring it before the public. It was true that 
one of the resolutions involved an expenditure of public money, but this 
expense would be for the good of the country generally, and therefore they 
felt justified in urging on the public to press upon the Government the 
need of acting in this matter. When they obtained this object, and the 
question was taken up by the public, they had achieved all in their power. 

Dr. Wilkie moved the first resolution — 

" That this meeting expresses its conviction of the great importance of 
exploring the interior of Australia, and deems it most desirable that an 
attempt should be made, at as early a period as practicable, to penetrate 
through Central Australia, from east to west, for the purpose of connectino- 
the previous discoveries of Mitchell, Kennedy, Sturt, Gregory, and Grey." 
He was pleased to see so large a meeting, considering the nature of the 
weather. He felt that he had no need to urge upon them the claims 
their chairman, Captain Clarke, had on their attention, from the able 
manner in which he had always furthered the cause of exploration in the 
interior. He had, when Surveyor- General, actually projected the very line of 
exploration now proposed. (Hear.) In order to carry out their scheme, 
they could only impress its value on the public by such means as they were 
then adopting. The expedition now sent out by the Government of New 
South Wales, to explore the country and search for the remains of Leich- 
hardt, had its origin at a meeting held in Sydney, in September last. That 
exploration of the interior had occupied, to a great extent, the attention of 

lviii Appendix. 

scientific gentlemen connected with the Philosophical Institute of Victoria, 
and an extended exploration of the interior was considered desirable. It 
was seen, however, that it would be necessary to postpone that scheme for 
a year, until they could have the advantage of learning the results of Mr. 
Gregory's exertions. According to what they had heard, the unexplored 
tract in the centre of this country was 1,600 miles in length by 800 miles in 
breadth : and, considering the vastness of this great region, they need not 
be surprised at the scientific interest attached to its exploration, nor at the 
amount of care necessary to send a party through it. The Geographical 
Society of London had taken up this subject with considerable interest, and 
had even despatched an exploring expedition here. It was said that the 
cost of this was something like £20,000. The result of that attempt had 
convinced him of the inexpediency of employing vessels in expeditions of 
this kind. In this case the steamer which was to convey supplies to the 
party missed them altogether, and necessitated their return into the settled 
districts . He thought that land expeditions were best. New South Wales and 
South Australia had done much in the question of exploration of the inte- 
rior, and the wealthy colony of Victoria, although not so much interested in 
it, should be in the van in all that concerned the future welfare of the 
Australias. It was a matter of surprise elsewhere that the energy of the 
English population here should be content with the examination of the mere 
borders of their adopted country. It was true that Mr. Gregory doubted 
the power of any exploring party to pass through the central desert . In 
this opinion he did not concur. No great rivers flowed from this region, but 
many Australian rivers were lost in lakes, and marshes in the interior, and 
it was quite possible that a large river might be discovered on the west 
coast. He thought that Eyre's Creek might be a branch from some large 
river which Captain Sturt had failed to discover ; what reason could lead 
any one to infer that the interior districts of Australia are not watered by 
heavy periodical rains? Sir Thomas Mitchell and Dr. Leichhardt desired to 
penetrate Australia from east to west, and they planned a line from Moreton 
Bay to Port Essington at the same time, but no immediate effort was made 
by the Government of the colony, and Leichhardt took the necessary steps 
and carried out the plan himself, without Government assistance. On his 
return to Sydney, Sir Thomas Mitchell took the command of an exploring 
expedition, and discovered a large river believed to penetrate to the 
centre of Victoria. That river was afterwards found to turn 
suddenly and unexpectedly to the south. It was, however, the 
proper spot for the establishment of a depot for an exploring party 
towards the centre. If his theory, that Eyre Creek was merely a continua- 
tion of a large river to the north, was found to be correct there was no doubt 
that the solution of the problem of vast importance — the penetration of this 
country from east to west — would have been attained by Victoria. He 
begged to propose the resolution he had read. 

Mr. Jas. Bonwick seconded the resolution. The great question first to 
consider was, the propriety of exploration of the interior of Australia. Of 
that there was no doubt ; and next came the question of the route to be 
tried. The first which was proposed was the route from east to west, in 
pursuance of which many good points might be selected. The difficulties of 
the undertaking were certainly great, but, a? Dr. Wilkie thought it was 
not a justifiable assumption to suppose that the interior was all desert, they 
might not be insuperable. It was said that the centre of Arabia was a 
desert; — true, but Arabia had no such fertile borders as Australia. And 
again, flocks had penetrated 800 miles towards the interior, their owners 
found the land good. Of South Africa it was generally supposed by the 
natives that the interior was a desert. There was a desert to be crossed, 
but Dr. Livingstone creased it, and they were all familiar with his success. 
Captain Sturt was of opinion that something might even yet be done towards 

Appendix. lix 

removing the veil from Central Australia. The want of water was a difficulty 
to be overcome ; but that was not insuperable. Eyre's Creek did not, doubtless, 
arise from sands in the interior, but might come from some large water 
north of the sands. The Colorado, in California, pursued a subterranean 
route through land for 200 miles. This might be found to be the case in 
some rivers and creeks here. The great iliscoveries of this world had never 
been accomplished without an effort, and sometimes a despairing effort. 
(Cheers.) People lived for twenty-six years in Sydney before the Blue 
Mountains were pierced, and the magnificent country beyond discovered. 
Mr. Surveyor Oxley gave it as his opinion that the whole of the country 
south, down to the sea, was utterly uninhabitable by man. This condemned 
district included the whole of the country of Port Phillip. Captain Sturt, 
however, by his judicious operations, descended the Murrumbidgee to the 
Murray, and traced its outlet to Lake Victoria, and the result was the 
discovery of the plains of South Australia, and afterwards of the beautiful 
plains of Western Australia, on which, however, Messrs. Batman and 
Fawkner had already settled ? Count Strzlescki explored the Australian 
Alps at much personal suffering. (The speaker here gave a brief sketch 
of the various exploring expeditions since 1830, and all of which are, of 
course, familiar to the public ) The object to be gained was a grand one, 
viz., a caravan road from Victoria to the Gulf of Carpentaria, and thus 
in lime Victoria might command the trade of the Indian seas. To com- 
mence, let them establish a basis of operations at Cooper's Creek. 
The expedition could then explore the stony desert, and find the line of 
Eyre's Creek. This could be made another basis of operations, from which 
the party could work gradually to the interior and across, by establishing 
other bases where they found water. This would occupy years, but could be 
done, and the dark riddle which had so long puzzled them be solved, viz., the 
exploration of Central Australia. 

A Person in the body of the meeting here obtained permission to make a 
few remarks. He said he was proud to see the working classes and scien- 
tific bodies associated in works of this kind. These works should be rapidly 
extended, but should be carried out as Captain Sturt's had been, without 
bloodshed. (Hear.) Their explorers should be impressed with the necessity 
of kindly treating the natives. (Hear, hear ) He regretted that the Govern- 
ment here should take the land from the natives and not pay for it, as 
they did to the more warlike races in New Zealand. (Cheers. J The natives 
there were willing to sell for small sums, and it was a shame for them to 
reflect that this had not been done here, and means adopted to save the lives of 
the inhabitants. 

Mr. Blandowski said that at present the runs along the Mur- 
ray Eiver were very valuable— £250 for a running mile, and £150 per 
running mile on the banks of the Darling. Between Kennedy's track 
and Mr. Sturt's, there was a district of 400 miles unexplored, and this land 
might turn out to be extremely valuable. The idea of the Argus to send the 
exploration party to Cooper's Creek was, in his opinion, impossible, consi- 
dering that the preliminary expedition would consist of only four men and a 
leader. They could not cross the country for want of water. The soil was of 
a spongy kind, which rapidly absorbed rain, and there was no stream of 
sufficient importance to throw a branch across their track. 

The resolution was then put and carried. 

Dr. Mueller moved the second resolution. 

"That this meeting recommends the formation of a light preliminary ex- 
pedition, to explore the country between the Darling and the Victoria rivers 
with a view of opening up a line of communication between this colony and 
Central Australia, and for the purpose of selecting a suitable site for estab- 
lishing a depot, to serve as the basis of future explorations." 

The reasons why this limitation of the first proposition was recommended 

lx Appendix. 

were that, although there were uo doubt many oases in the supposed central 
desert, yet it might be at first very difficult to get from one to the other. 
Experience was required to undertake a task of such magni- 
tude as the exploration of Central Australia, and the prelimi- 
nary expedition seemed likely to confer that experience. In 
order to avail themselves of Mr. Babbage's expedition to the west of Lake 
Torrens, they had limited themselves to a mere reduced exploration at first. 
Again, any valuable country opened to the north of this colony must be of 
material importance. Another reason for limiting the exploration was that 
it would take the party through different tribes to those through which Mr. 
Gregory had passed, and thus existed a better chance of throwing some 
light on the fate of the unfortunate Leichhardt. This plan could not be car- 
ried out with the limited means at the disposal of the Iastitute, and in 
asking for Government assistance he had no doubt they would meet with the 
support of the people of this colony. It would give him pleasure to relate 
the progress of Mr. Gregory's exploration, in which he had been engaged ; 
but as this was not immediately in connection with the topic in hand, 
he would do so after the meeting had terminated, if called on. 

Dr. Macadam thought that the great exploration of Australia, 
from east to west should be preceded by an exploration of the land 
from the Darling to the junction of the Victoria and Thompson rivers. 
There were difficulties which had to be overcome by investigation 
before they involved the lives of so many of their fellow-creatures 
in this gigantic work. The preliminary expedition would give them the 
range of an unexplored country, extending 450 miles in length by 200 in 
breadth, and from which brief excursions could be taken towards the in- 
terior when they establishe d a depot where provisions c-juld be conveyed to 
them. The leader of the party could thus try his men, for they need not 
be absent more than five months. At the end of that time they might be 
in possession of the results of Mr. Gregory's and Mr. Babbage's expeditions, 
and an important plan of action could be devised for the great scheme. 

The resolution was then put and carried. 

Mr. Hodgson, M.L.C., moved the third resolution — 

" That this meeting recognises the duty of the colonists of Victoria to 
co-operate with the Philosophical Institute in carrying out the scheme of 
exploration proposed." 

He was sure that this must meet with their hearty concurrence ; and as so 
much had already been said, he would simply move the resolution he had 

Dr. Eades seconded the resolution. From what he had heard, it seemed 
that the preliminary expedition was the most reasonable plan of action. It 
was too great a responsibility for them' to risk the lives of their fellow - 
creatures in so tremendous an attempt as that to explore the Australian Con- 
tinent from east to west, especially as there was reason to believe that the 
country was of an extremely difficult and dangerous nature in some parts. 

Mr. Hough supported the resolution. The scheme they were asking the ■ 
meeting to endorse was now so fully recognised to be the best and safest, 
that he need not say much on that head. The question was, would they 
wait any longer before they followed in that course of progress which was 
now so universally developing itself. There was a great destiny before this 
country, and it was time that they endeavored to regard their material and 
political interests, which could be done effectually by these efforts. He did 
not think that there was much to regret in the recession of the black races, 
for it seemed to be an inevitable natural law ; and even the native races in 
New Zealand had remarked and admitted it. He did not think that they 
should not do all they cnuld to conserve the native races, but it seemed to 
him that the lands of the colony were destined to be occupied by the Anglo- 
Saxon race, and it was foreign to the object of their meeting to consider how 

Appendix. lxi 

the effect of the population of Australia by this race would affect the 

Mr. Sizar Elliott said that this question had a very important commer- 
cial bearing. The larger the amount of land, stock, and agriculture, they 
possessed, the more extended would be their commercial relations ; and, of 
course, so would they rise in power and in the progress of civilisation. 

Mr. F. Sinnett moved the fourth resolution — 

" That a deputation, consisting of the Hon. Captain Clarke, M.L.A , the 
Hon. John Hodgson, M.L.C., Dr. Wilkie, Dr. Macadam, and R. H. Blaud, 
Esq., wait upon His Excellency, to request his favorable consideration of the 
proposed expedition ; and that they afterwards wait upon the Hon. W. C. 
Haines, the Chief Secretary, to submit to the Government the resolutions of 
this public meeting, to solicit their support of the important object contem- 
plated by the Philosophical Institute, and to request that they would be 
pleased to place the sum of £2,500 on the Estimates in aid of the same." 

He excused himself from making any lengthened remarks on this topic, as 
the resolution had only just been put into his hand. He thought that the 
fact that the lands to be explored were far beyond the boundaries of the 
colony ought not to check them in their efforts ; and he trusted that there 
would be no difficulty in obtaining the grant of the sum they sought. 

Mr. Mortimer seconded the resolution, which was put and carried. 

A vote of thanks to the chairman closed the proceedings. — Argus, 5th 
January, 1858. 


Philosophical Institute of Victoria. 

Melbourne, 27th October, 1857. 
To the Honorable the President of the Board of Land and Works, 

Sir,— We have the honor to submit to you, on behalf of the Philosophical 
Institute of Victoria, this application for a Grant of Land on which to erect 
a building for the purposes of the Intitute, viz., to hold its meetings and to 
preserve its property, 

The objects of the Institute are,— the Advancement of Science, Literature 
and Art, by the Reading of Papers based on original observation and re- 
search, and the formation of a Library and Museum. The Institute has been 
formed on the same plan, and with the same objects as the Royal Society of 
London, which is regarded as the highest scientific institution in Europe, and 
which has always b-en liberally endowed by Government. 

We might here add that the Royal Society of Tasmania is endowed to- the 
extent of £1.000 sterling annually, and has had bestowed upon it a large 
grant of land for experimental gardens. 

We would respectfully submit to you the important position which the 
Institute lias now attained, its increasing importance, and the truly Victo- 
rian character of its objects. It numbers, at present, about two hundred. 

lxii Appendix. 

and fifty members, comprising those in the colony most distinguished for 
scientific and literary attainments. 

At the end of the Session, after defraying the expense attending the pub- 
lication of its Transactions, and other contingencies, the Institute will be in 
possession of about £1,300 sterling, for building purposes. With this sum it 
is proposed to erect, at once, a Hall for the meetings, with space for future 

The Institute have nominated, with consent, the following gentlemen as 
Trustees : The Hon. Andrew Clarke, R.E., M.L.A., President ; Professor 
Wilson, and David E. Wilkie, Esq., M.D., Vice-Presidents; Professor Irving, 
Treasurer ; Dr. Ifila, J.P., and the Rev. John J. Bleasdale. 
We have the honor to be, Sir, 

Your most obedient servants, 
(Signed) DAVID E. WTLKXE, M.D. 


Signed on behalf of the Council of the Institute. 

P. S. The following allotments of land are named in the order of their 
suitability : — 

1st. An allotment situated between the Exchange building, and the new 
Savings bank in Market Square. 

2nd. An allotment fronting Russell street, and at the rear of the Public 

[One or other of these allotments had been destined by a former Govern- 
ment, for the purposes of the Institute.] 

3rd. A triangular allotment at the intersection of Lygon and Victoria 

4th. A triangular allotment at the intersection of Victoria and La Trobe 

(Signed,) JOHN MACADAM, M. D., 

Hon. Secretary, Phil. Institute of Victoria. 


Department of Pcelic Lands, 

Melbourne, 14th January, 1858. 
Sir, — Referring to an application made on the 27th October last, on 
behalf of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria, for a portion of ground 
on which to erect a building for the purposes of the Institute, I have the 
honor to inform you that His Excellency the Governor in Council has been 
pleased to approve of a reserve of 0a. 1r. 6p., being made for the above 
purpose at the junction of Victoria-street with Latrobe- street, Melbourne, 
as shown on the accompanying tracing. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, 

Your most obedient servant, 


Acting Surveyor- General. 
John Macadam, M.D., Honorary Secretary for the 
Philosophical Institute of Victoria. 





31st DECEMBER, 1857. 

(Those whose names have * or t prefixed are Life or Honorary Members 

A'Beckett, His Honor Sir William 
Acheson, Frederick, Esq., C.E. 
Adams, Robert, Esq., C.E. 
Agg, Alfred J., Esq. 
Allan, George, jun., Esq. 
Amsinck, Lieutenant Henry, R.N. 
Archer, William H. ; Esq. 
Aspinall, B. C, Esq., M.L.A. 

Baillie, D., Esq. 
Bancroft, W. C, Esq., A.D.C. 
Bardin, Rev. C. P. M. 
Barker, Edward, Esq., M.R.C.S.L. 
tBarkly, Sir Henry, K.C.B., His Excellency the Go- 
vernor, Patron. 
Barry, His Honor Mr. Justice 
Barry, Rev. John, D.D. 
Barry, M., Esq., L.R.C.P.L. 
Baxter, Rev. W., M.A. 
Becker, Ludwig, Esq. 
Belt, Thomas, Esq. 
Berndt, Adolphus, Esq., M.D. 
Bennett, The Hon. J. B., M.L.C. 
Bibbs, Thomas, Esq. 
Black, Joseph, Esq., M.RC.S.L. 
Blackett, C. R., Esq. 
Blackburn, James, Esq. 
Bland, R. H, Esq. 

lxiv MemherS Names. 

"Blandowski, William, Esq. 
*Bleasdale, Rev. John I. 

Bonwick, James, Esq. 

Bosisto, Joseph, Esq. 

Broad, Charles, Esq. 

Brodribb, K. E., Esq. 

Brooke, J. H., Esq., M.L.A. 

Brownless, Anthony C. Esq., M.D. 

Bruce, J. V. A., Esq. 

Bryson, William E., Esq. 

Budd, Richard H., Esq., B.A. 

Burn, Andrew, Esq. 


tCadell, Captahi 

Cairns, Rev. A., D.D. 

Cairns, John, Esq. 

Campbell, Conn, Esq., M.L.A. 

Campbell, Major Norman, Registrar-General. 

Campbell, Robert, Esq. 

Chirnside, Thomas, Esq. 

Christy, F. C, Esq., C.E. 

Clark, Robert N., Esq., B.A. 

Clarke, The Hon. A. Capt. R.E., M.L.A. 

Clarson, William, Esq. 
*Clow, Rev. James 

Cochrane, J. C, Esq. 

Cope, T. S., Esq. 

Corbett, Francis A., Esq. 

Cowie, The Hon. James, M.L.C. 

Crawford, J. F., Esq. 

Cutts, William H, Esq., M.D. 

Daughsh, Henry W., Esq. 
Davitt, Arthur, Esq. 
Dembinski, Count John 
Dickson, John E. I., Esq. 
Dill, George, Esq. 
Divorty, Rev. George, A.M. 
*Dobree, Arthur, Esq. 
Dow, James II., Esq. 

Members' Names. lxv 

Dowinan, William, Esq., Lieut. H.M. '40th Regt. 

Eades, Richard, Esq. B.A., M.D. 

Earley, J., Dr. 

Eaton, H. F., Esq. 

Edwards, Henry, Esq. 

Elder, Henry, Esq. 

Ellery, R. L. J. Esq. 
*Elliott. Sizar, Esq. 
*EUiott, S., jun., Esq 

Elsden, William, Esq., C.E. 

Farewell, Charles, Esq. 

Farrage, William, Esq., Surgeon 

Fenner Rev. T. P., M.A. 

Fisher, Alexander, esq., M.R.C.S.E. 

Fitzgibbon, E. G., Esq. 

Fitzpatrick, Very Rev. J., D.D. 

Fletcher, Rev. Richard 

Fletcher, Rev. W. R, M.A. 

Ford, Frederick T. W., Esq., M.R.C.S. 

Foxton, J. G, Esq. 

Franklyn, J. B., Esq. 

Fyfe, Alexander, Esq. 

Gell, Francis T., Esq. 

Gemmell, J., Dr. 

George, John, Esq. 

Gillbee, William, Esq., M.R.C.S.E. 

Gilmore, Robert G., Esq. 

Goodhug'li, J., Esq. 

Goold, The Right Rev. J. A., D.D, His Lordship 

the Catholic Bishop of Melbourne 
Green, William H., Esq., C.E. 
Griffith, Charles J., Esq., M.L.A. 
Guinness, Rev. W. N. 

Haines, The Hon. W. C, M.L.A., Chief Secretary 
Hamilton, WiUiam B., Esq. 
Hamilton, William, Esq. 

lxvi Members' Names. 

Hawkins, Matthew W., Esq. 

Hayes, Patrick, Esq. 

Hearn, Professor, M.A., LL.D. 

Henderson, Rev. William. 

Hepburn, Thomas, Esq. 

Hicks, George, Esq. 

Higinbotham, George, Esq. 

Hodgkinson, Clement, Esq., C.E. 

Hodgson, The Hon. John, M.L.C. 
*Holmes, George, Esq. 

Hope, D. T., esq. 

Hope, The Hon. R. C, M.L.C. 

Home, R. H., Esq. 

Hosking, William, Esq. 

Hough, G. S., Esq. 

Houghton, James B., Esq. 

Howitt, Godfrey, Esq., M.D. 
fHowitt, William, Esq. 

Hughes, D. A., Esq., M.L.A. 

Hull, William B., Esq., C.E. 

*Iffla, Solomon, Esq., J. P., M. D. 
Irving, Professor, M.A. 

Jackson, James, Esq. 
Jones, Edwin, Rsq. 
Joseph, Henry, Esq. 

Kane, Benjamin H., Esq. 
fKay, Captain J., R.N. 

Kemp, Samuel V., Esq., C.E. 

Kentish, N. L., Esq. 

Kershaw, William, Esq. 
fKilgour, Dr. 

Knaggs, Robert, Esq., M.R.C.S.L. 

Knight, J. G., Esq. 

Kruse, John, Esq. 

Lanktree, John, Esq. 
Lawson, Robert, Esq. 

Members' Names. lxvii 

♦Macadam, John, Esq., M.D., F.R.S.S.A. 

McCoy, Professor, F.G.S. 

McCracken, A. E., Esq. 

Macdonald, Rev. Donald, A.M. 

Macgillivary, P. H., Esq., A.M. 

M' Go wan, Samuel W. f Esq. 

Mackay, George, esq., L.L.D. 

Mackenna, J. "William Esq., M.D. 

Mackenzie, J. S., Esq. 

Maclean, David P., Esq., M.R.C.S.E. 

Macrae, James, Dr. 

Matthews, R. B., Captain 

Matthews, Barnard, Esq. 

Mayne, E G., Esq. 

Millar, John, Esq., C.E., F.S.A. 

Miller, John S., Esq. 

Moors, Henry, Esq. 

Morison, Rev. Alexander 

Morrison, Alexander, Esq. M.A. 

Morton, William L., Esq. 

Muir, William P., Esq. 
fMueller, Ferdinand, Esq., M.D., Ph.D., F.R.G.S. 

Murphy, The Hon. Francis, M.L.A. 

Musson, John, Esq. 

Neumayer, Professor George 

O'Hea, Rev. Charles 
Oppenheimer, Joseph, Esq. 
Orlebar, A. B., esq., M.A. 
O'Shanassy, The Hon.John, M.L.A. 

Pasco,, Lieut., C.A.D., R.N. 

Pasley, The Hon. C, Capt., R.E. 

Pennell, George B., Esq. 

Perry, The Right Rev. C, D.D., Lord Bishop of 

Pinnock, J. D., Esq., Chief Immigration Agent 
Pounds, J. B., Esq. 
Powlett, F.A., Esq. 

lxviii Members' Names. 

Preshaw, W. F, Dr. J. P. 

Purchas, Albert, Esq. 

Randle, William, Esq. 
Rawlins, — , Esq. 
*Rawlinson, Thomas E., Esq., C.E. 
Ray, Edgar, Esq. 
Richardson, E., Esq. 
Robertson, James, Esq., M.A., M.D. 
Ross, Alfred, Esq. 

Savage, Robert, Esq. 

Schultz, William, Esq. 
tScott, R., Esq. 
tScott, Rev. William, M.A., F.G2 .& 

Selwyn, A. R. C, Esq. 

Sheil, Very Rev. L. 

Sholl, Martin, Esq. 

Sinnett, Frederick, Esq. 

Skene, Alexander John, Esq., C.E. 

Skilling, Thomas, Esq. 

Slade, Edgar, Esq. 
*Smith, Alexander K., Esq., C.E., F.R.S.S.A. 

Smith, Henry, Esq., C.E., F.G.S. 

Smith, James, Esq. 

Smith, L. L., Esq. 

Smyth, Robert B., Esq., F.G.S. 

Snell, Edward, Esq. 

Spowers, Allan, Esq. 

Stanbridge, William E., Esq. 

Stawell, Sir William F., His Honor the Chief Justice 

Stevenson, Henry, Esq. 

Stoney, Captain Henry B., H. M. 40th Regt. 

Stratford, Frederick A., Esq. 

Strutt, Charles E., Esq., M.R.C.S.L. 

Swyer, C. R., Esq. 

Symonds, Edward C, Esq. 

Taylor, Matthew W., Esq. 
Teale, Goodman, Esq. 

Members' Names. lxix 

Thomas, E. J., Esq. 
Thomson, Alexander, Esq., M.L.A. 
Thomson, John, Esq. 

Tierney, The Hon. Daniel J., M.D., M.L.C. 
fTodd, Charles, Esq. 
Tracy, Richard Thomas, Esq., M.D. 
Turnbull, William M., Esq., M.D. 

Ulrich, George, Esq. 

Vance, Rev. G. O., M.A. 
Verdon, George F., Esq. 
Vieusseux, Lewis, Esq. 

Wade, W., Esq. 
Wadsworth, Robert, Esq. 
Watson, John, Esq. 
Watson, Robert, Esq., C.E. 
Watt, Charles, Esq. 
Weire, William, Esq. 
Wharton, Robert, Esq., J.P. 
Whyte, Patrick, Esq., B.A. 
Wilhelmi, Charles, Esq. 
*Wilkie, David E., Esq., M.D. 
Wilson, Edward, Esq. 
*Wilson, Professor, M.A., F.C.P.S. 
Wright, William, Esq. 

Zeal, William A., Esq., C.E. 








I. The Society shall he called the " Philosophical Name. 
Institute of Victoria." 

II. The Philosophical Institute of Victoria is objects. 
founded for the advancement of science literature and 

art, with especial reference to the development of the 
resources of the country. 

III. The Philosophical Institute of Victoria shall Members a ^ m 
consist of Members and Honorary Members, all ofbers. 
whom shall be elected by ballot. 

IV. His Excellency the Governor of Victoria for patron, 
the time being shall be requested to be the Patron of 

the Institute. 

V. There shall be a President two Vice-Presi- officers. 
dents a Treasurer and a Secretary of the Institute, 
who with twelve other members shall constitute the 

VI. The Council shall have the management of Management. 
the affairs of the Institute. 

VII. The ordinary meetings of the Institute shall ordinary Meet- 
be held every third week during the months from 

parch to November inclusive. 

VIII. In the first week in December there shall be Annfversa? d 
a General Meeting to receive the report of the Council, Meetings. 
and in the first week in March there shall be the 
Anniversary Meeting to elect the Officers of the 
Institute for the ensuing year. 

Annual Dinner. IX. During the month of March there shall he an 

Annual Dinner of the Members of the Institute, after 
which the newly elected President shall read an 

Retirement of 

X. The President the Vice-Presidents the Trea- 
surer the Secretary and six senior ordinary Members of 
Council shall retire from office annually at the Anni- 
versary Meeting. The Officers so retiring shall be 
eligible for the same or any other offices then vacant. 

Election of Offi- 

XL The President the Vice-Presidents the Trea- 
usrer and the Secretary shall be separately elected by 
ballot, in the above-named order, at the Anniversary 
Meeting, and the six vacancies in the Council shall be 
then filled up together by ballot. 

Members in 

XII. No Member whose subscription is in arrear 
shall take part in the election of Officers or other 
business of the Meeting. 


XIII. If any vacancy occur among the Officers 
notice thereof shall be inserted in the summons for 
the next Meeting of the Institute, and the vacancy 
shall be then filled up by ballot. 

Duties of Presi- 

Duties of Trea- 

XIV. The President shall take the Chair at Meet- 
ings of the Institute and of the Council, regulate and 
keep order in all their proceedings, state questions and 
propositions to the Meeting, report the result of ballots, . 
introduce newly elected Members, and carry into 
effect the regulations of the Institute. He shall deliver 
an address at the annual dinner of the Institute. 

In the absence of the President the Chair shall 
be taken by one of the Vice-Presidents, the Treasurer, 
or an ordinary Member of Council. 

XV. T he Treasurer shall receive all money paid 
to the Institute and shall deposit the same in the 
Colonial Ba n k of Australasia to the credit of an 
account opened in the name of the Philosophical 
Institute of Victoria, all cheques against which shall 
be signed by himself and countersigned by the Secre- 
tary. He shall make all pa yments ordered by the 

Council, on receiving a written authority from the 
Chairman of the Meeting, keep a detailed account of 
all receipts and expenditure, prepare a balance sheet to 
be laid before the Council and included in their 
Annual Report, and produce his books if called on by 
the Council. 

The Treasurer shall issue the Notices required by 
Rules xxv and xxvi. 

XVI. The Secretary shall conduct the correspon- Duties of Secra, 
dence of the Institute and of the Council, attend 

all Meetings of the Institute and of the Council, take 
minutes of their proceedings and enter them in the 
proper books ; he shall inscribe the names and addresses 
of all Members in a book to be kept for that purpose, 
from which no name shall be erased except by order of 
the Council ; he shall issue Notices of all Meetings of 
the Institute and of the Council, shall have the custody 
of all papers of the Institute, and under the direc- 
tion of the Council superintend the printing of the 
Transactions of the Institute, and the correction of the 

He shall make all preparations for the Meet- 
ings of the Institute. 

XVII. The Council shall meet one week before J^^f of 
every ordinary meeting of the Institute. Notice of such 
meetings shall be sent to every member at least two 

days previously. No business shall be transacted at 
any meeting of the Council unless five members be 

XVIII. The Secretary shall call a Special Meeting ^^Meetings 
of Council on the authority of the President or of three 
members of Council. The notice for such meeting 

shall specify the object for which it is called, and no 
other business shall be entertained. 

XIX. The Council shall annually prepare a report Annual Report, 
of the proceedings of the Institute during the past 

year embodying the balance sheet duly audited and a 
statement of the present position of the Institute. 
This report shall be laid before the Institute at the 
General Meeting in December. No paper shall be 
read at this meeting. 


Expulsion of 

XX. If it shall come to the knowledge of the 
Council that the conduct of a member is injurious to the 
character of the Institute, and if two-thirds of the whole 
Council shall be satisfied after an opportunity of defence 
has been afforded to the member that such is the case, 
they shall request him to resign, and in case of his not 
doing so may expel him from the Institute. 

In every case all proceedings shall be entered upon 
the minutes. 

Special General 

XXI. The Council shall call a Special General 
Meeting of the Institute on receiving a requisition in 
writing signed by twenty-four members of the Insti- 
tute, specifying the purpose for which the meeting is 
required ; no other business shall be entertained at 
such meeting. Notice of such meeting and the 
purpose for which it is summoned shall be sent to 
every member at least ten days before the meeting. 

Election of 

XXII. Every candidate for membership shall be 
proposed and seconded by Members of the Institute. 
The name the address and the occupation of every 
candidate with the names of his proposer and of 
his seconder shall be communicated in writing to the 
Secretary, and shall be read at a meeting of Council, 
and also at the following Meeting of the Institute, and 
the ballot shall take place at the next following ordi- 
nary meeting of the Institute. When the number of 
voters in favour of any candidate shall be five times 
the number of those against him, he shall be declared 
duly elected, and not otherwise. 

Members shall 
sisrn laws. 

XXIII. Every newly-elected member shall, at the 
first Meeting of the Institute at which he may be pre- 
sent, sign a declaration, in a book provided for that 
purpose, that he will observe the laws of the Institute. 

U embers. 

XXIV. Gentlemen not resident in Victoria who are 
distinguished for their attainments in science literature 
or art may be proposed for election as Honorary Mem- 
bers on the recommendation of an absolute majority of 
the Council. The election shall be conducted in the 
same manner as that of ordinary members, but nine- 
tenths of the votes must be in favour of the candidate. 

XXV. Members of the Institute resident in Mel- Subscription. 
bourne or within fifty miles thereof shall pay two 
guineas annually, and members resident beyond that 
distance shall pay one guinea annually. The subscrip- 
tions shall be due on the 1st of January in every year, 

and notice thereof shall be sent to every member 
during the preceding December. 

If the subscription of any member be not 
paid before the 1st of March, his name shall be posted 
at the next ordinary meeting of the Institute and at 
the two following ones should his subscription remain 
so long unpaid; and a second notice shall be sent 
informing him that this will be done. 

After the third meeting notice shall be sent 
to him that he has ceased to be a member of the 
Institute, but that he may be restored on furnishing 
in writing to the Council a satisfactory reason for his 
delay, and paying arrears within one month. 

XXVI. Newly elected members shall pay an en- Entrance Fee, 
trance fee of two guineas, in addition to the subscription 

for the current year. Those elected after the 1st of 
July shall pay only half of the subscription for the 
current year. If the entrance fee and subscription be 
not paid within one month of the notification of 
election, a second notice shall be sent, and if payment 
be not made within one month from the second notice 
the election shall be void. 

XXVII. Members may compound for all annual Life Members, 
subscriptions of the current and future years by paying 
twenty guineas. 

XXVIII. At the ordinary meetings of the Institute Duration of 
the Chair shall be taken punctually at half-past seven ee mg 
o'clock and shall be vacated not later than half-past 

ten o'clock. 

XXIX. At the ordinary meetings business shall order of Busi- 
be transacted in the following order : — 

Minutes of the preceding meeting to be read, 

amended if incorrect, and confirmed. 
Sew Members to enroll their names and be 


Order of 

Ballot for the election of new Members. 
Vacancies among Officers, if any, to be filled up. 
Business arising out of the minutes. 
Communications from the Council. 
Presents to be laid on the table and acknowledged. 
Motions of which notice has been given to be 

Notices of motion for the next meeting to be given 

in, and read by the Secretary. 
Papers to be read. 

No vote of thanks to any Member for his paper 
shall be proposed. 

Immediately after each paper the Chairman shall 
call on the Members for any remarks they may wish 
to make or questions they may wish to ask. 

No Member shall speak more than once on 
any paper or for a longer period than five minutes, 
unless called on by the Chairman, who however shall 
not allow him to exceed ten minutes on the whole. 

When no member has any further questions 
to ask or remarks to offer, the Chairman shall call on 
the author for his reply to such questions and remarks, 
which shall terminate the discussion. 

strangers. XXX. No stranger shall speak at a meeting of 

the Institute unless specially invited to do so by the 

Business to be 

XXXI. No business shall be entertained at any 
meeting which has not been iuserted in the summons for 
that meetins:. 


XXXII. The Council may call additional meetings 
whenever they may deem it necessary. 

XXXIII. Every Member may introduce two 
visitors to the meetings of the Institute by orders 
signed by himself. 

Members may 

XXXIV. Members shall have the privilege of 
reading before the Institute papers containing accounts 
of experiments observations and researches conducted 
by themselves, on subjects within the scope of the 

XXXV. If a Member be unable to attend for the or depute other 
purpose of reading his paper, he may delegate to any em ei 
Member of the Institute the reading thereof and his 

right of reply. 

XXXVI. Any Member desirous of reading a Members must 
paper shall give in writing to the Secretary ten days thefrpapersf 
before the Meeting at which he desires it to be read, 

its title and the time its reading will occupy. 

The Secretary shall lay this communication before 
the Council at its next Meeting. Papers shall be 
read in the order in which such notices are received 
by the Secretary. 

XXXVII. The Council may permit a paper of a papers by 
nature similar to the above, not written by a Member stran s ers - 
of the Institute, to be read, if for any special reason 

they shall deem it desirable. 

XXXVIII. Every paper read before the Institute Papers shall be 
shall be the property thereof and immediately after it the institute. 
has been read shall be delivered to the Secretary and 

shall remain in his custody. 

XXXIX. At the Meeting of the Council next council shall 
following the reading of a paper the Council shall publication. 
decide whether it shall appear in the Transactions of 

the Institute. 

XL. No paper shall be published in the Transac- papers must be 
tions which in the opinion of the Council does not origina 
consist mainly of original matter as regards the facts 
or the theories enunciated. 

XLI. Should the Council feel a difficulty in council may 
deciding on the publication of a paper, they may refer Members? 1 * ta 
it to any member or members of the Institute, who 
shall report on the same. 

XLII. Should the Council decide not to publish Rejected papers 
any paper it shall be at once returned to the author. 

to be returned. 

XLIII. The transactions of the Institute shall be Transactions to 
published in parts at intervals not exceeding six months. haiF-yeariy? 

natiute to XLIV. No member shall publish or consent to the 

have priority of . ,. ■ . _ iir- 1 • • -i 

publication. publication ol any paper read before the institute, until 
it shall have been published in the Transactions or 
returned to him by the Council. 

Members may XLV. The author of any paper which" the Council 

have 50 copies of, i • -i -i , 1 v i • -,i • i 

their papers. have decided to publish in the transactions may have 
any number of copies of his paper, not exceeding fifty, 
on giving notice of his wish in writing to the Secretary 
with his paper and on paying the extra cost of such 

Members to XL VI. Every member whose subscription is not 

have copies of • n " ■, -, • x , • , i j , 

Transactions, m arrear and every honorary member is entitled to 
receive one copy of the Transactions of the Institute 
as published. Newly-elected members shall, on pay- 
ment of their entrance-fee and subscription, receive a 
copy of the volume of the Transactions last published. 

Property. XL VII. Every book pamphlet model plan draw- 

ing specimen preparation or collection presented to 
or purchased by the Institute shall be placed in the 
museum of the Institute. 

Museum. XL VIII. The museum shall be open to members 

of the Institute and the public at such times and under 
such regulations as the Council may deem fit. 

om-opeTt ership XLIX. The legal ownership of the property of . 

the Institute is vested in the President the Vice- 
Presidents and the Treasurer for the time being, in 
trust for the use of the Institute ; but the Council 
shall have full control over the expenditure of the funds 
and management of the property of the Institute. 

committees elect L. Every Committee appointed by the Institute 

Chairman. in ■ n ■ i r^t • i 1 n 

shall at its farst meeting elect a Chairman who shall 
convene the Committee and bring up its report. 

Eeport before LI. All Committees and individuals to whom any 

work has been assigned by the Institute shall present 
to the Council, not later than the 1st of November in 
each year, a report of the progress which has been 
made ; and, in cases where grants of money for scientific 


purposes have been entrusted to them, a statement of 
the sums which have been expended and of the balance 
of each grant which remains unexpended. 

LII. Grants of pecuniary aid for scientific pur- Grants expire, 
poses from the funds of the Institute shall expire on 
the 1st of November next following, unless it shall 
appear by a report that the recommendations on which 
they were granted have been acted on, or a continua- 
tion of them be ordered by the Council. 

LIII. In all cases where additional grants of money Additional 
are made for the continuation of researches at the cost 
of the Institute, the sum named shall be deemed to 
include as a part of the amount the specified balance 
which may remain unpaid on the former grant for the 
same object. 

LIV. In grants of money to committees and indi- Personal ex- 
viduals, the Institute does not contemplate the payment paid. n ° 
of any personal expenses which may be incurred by 
the members. 

LV. The Chairman of each Committee is the S. alrn ? an t t0 
person entitled to call on the Treasurer for such por- 
tion of the sum granted as may from time to time be 

LVI. Every committee shall cease to exist on the 
day of meeting next following the 1st of November, 
unless then re-appointed. 

L VII. No new law or alteration or repeal of an Alteration of 
existing law shall be made, except at the General laws- 
Meeting in December, or at a Special General Meeting 
summoned for the purpose as provided in law xxi., and 
in pursuance of notice given at the preceding ordinary 
meeting of the Institute. 

LVIII. Should any circumstance arise not pro- cases not pro- 
vided for in these laws, the Council are empowered to Tlded for ' 
act as may seem to them best for the interests of 
the Institute. 


jH&laJrA |gr. 






€irdtis for % CoKirtil ai % Institute frg 
JOHN MACADAM, M.D., Hon. Sec. 

|8U lira time : 



2Htt |Wl0SO|limtI JftStifa^ 







<£bitcb for % (Emuiril of fyz Institute bjr 
JOHN MACADAM, M.D., Hon. Sec. 

gUIbflitnr* : 


^pijiksopljititl Institute of Vitttth. 










Anniversary Address of the President, His Honor Sir 
William Foster Stawell, Knt., Chief Justice of 
Victoria, &c, &c. ... ... ... ... 1 — 6 

Art. I. Some Facts determining the rate of the Upheaval of the 
South Coast of the Australian Continent, by Ludwig 
Becker, Esq. ... ... ... ... ... 7 — 9 

II. On the Reclamation and Cultivation of Batman's Swamp, 
by Alexander Kennedy Smith, Esq., C.E., 
F.E.S.S.A., with a plate ... ... ... 9—18 

III. On the Hirudo Australis, by Jos. Bosisto, Esq., President 

of the Pharmaceutical Society, Melbourne ... ... 18 — 22 

IV. Diagnostic Notes on New or Imperfectly known Austra- 

lian Plants, by Dr. Ferdinand Mueller ... 22 — 31 

V. On the Weir Mallee (a Water-yielding Tree), the Bulrush 
and Porcupine Grass of Australia, by John Cairns, 
Esq. ... ... ... ... 32—35 

VI. A few Notes on Two Kinds of Australian Leeches, by 

Ludwig Becker, Esq., with a plate ... ... 36 — 38 

VII. On an Australian Bat, No. I, by Ludwig Becker, Esq., 

with a plate ... ... ... ... ... 38 — 40 

VIII. Some hitherto Unknown Australian Plants, described by 

Dr. Ferdinand Mueller ... ... ... 40 — 63 

IX. Mr. J. T. Gellibrand's Memoranda of a Trip to Port 
Phillip in 1836, addressed to His Excellency the Lieu- 
tenant-Governor, from a MS. Copy presented to the 
Philosophical Institute of Victoria, by the Hon. Cap- 
tain Clarke, R.E. ... ... ... ... 63 — 85 

X. Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit in South Australia, by 
the Rev. Julian Edmund Woods, Penola, South 
Australia ... ... ... ... ... 85 — 94 

XL Description and System of Working of the Flagstaff 
Observatory, Melbourne, by Professor George Neu- 
mayee, with three plates ... ... ... 94 — 103 



XII. Some facts illustrative of the Meteorology of August, 
1858, in the Southern Hemisphere, by Professor 

George Neumayer, with four plates ... ... 104 — 114 

XIII. Index of the Plants described in the Transactions of the 
Victorian Institute, of the Philosophical Society, and 
of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria, by Dr. Fer- 
dinand Mueller ... ... ... ... 115 — 120 

Proceedings — Minutes of the Meetings of the Institute i. — xxix. 

Annual Report for 1858 ... ... ... ... xxxi. 

Balance Sheet for 1858 ... ... ... ... xxxiv. 

Reports of Committees ... ... ... ... xxxv. 

List of Institutions, Learned Societies, &c, receiving 

copies of the Transactions of the Institute in 1858 ... xliii. 

List of Members as at 31st December, 185S ... ... xlv. 

Laws of the Institute ... ... ... end of volume. 


pttlasflfltkal Jitsitttutit 4 Wvdsm. 

Anniversary Address of the President, His Honor Sir William 
Foster Stawell, Knight, Chief Justice of Victoria, tyc. } fyc. 

[Delivered to the Members of the Institute, 12th April, 1858.] 

Your Excellency and Gentlemen, 

I know very well that I have not been selected for 
the high office which I occupy in consequence of any scien- 
tific attainments which I possess. I have been always en- 
gaged in the work of a very laborious profession — always too 
jealous of my devoting myself to any other studies than those 
immediately connected with it ; and thus I am the more in- 
debted to your kindness in having placed me in this position. 
It is, perhaps, in consequence of my holding another office 
that I have received this honor, and feeling that in doing 
honor to the office you do honor to the man, I beg to thank 
you, gentlemen, for both ; I also feel, and I trust I am not 


2 Anniversary Address. 

wrong in the supposition, that a suggestion may have operated 
on the minds of some members in selecting me, as I have 
always understood that a society of this kind does, in no 
country, merely tend to the improvement and cultivation of 
science, but also creates a social intercourse ; and I, there- 
fore, regard this as neutral ground upon which we can all 
meet. Gentlemen, I am debarred, as you are aware, from 
participation in the politics of the country, and I dare not 
express a single opinion upon any subject which is likely to 
come before me in my capacity as a judge ; but, fortunately, 
this is a subject upon which I am free to enter and express an 
opinion. I am right well aware that there is much for us to 
do, and, on behalf of this society, I very cordially thank his 
Excellency for the frank, open, and manly way in which he 
pointed out what we ought to do. It is a true friend who tells 
us what our failings are, and who not merely praises us. But 
he will allow me to say, that he has not seen the troubles 
through which we have gone, recognizing, as I may, in 
this instance, those difficulties which every society in its in- 
fancy has to encounter. I cannot help congratulating the 
Institute on the progress which it has already made. Some 
few years ago, I well remember, when I was in office, ab- 
senting myself from an early meeting of what was the first 
Institution, on the plea of urgent official duties. And I re- 
member that my hon. friend, who sits on my immediate 
right, and who was my predecessor in the chair which I have 
now the honor to occupy, told me that the encouragement of 
such societies was of as much importance as official or any 
other class of duties } that the influence which such institutions 
were calculated to produce on the state of society was just as 
of much importance as any motion which I might have the 
honor of submitting to the Assembly ; or any case which I 
might have the responsibility of conducting in court. Al- 
though I was not then sufficiently impressed with the truth 

Anniversary Address. 3 

of his observations, I am now confirmed in a belief which I 
afterwards entertained, that all he said was true. At that 
time, the society, I confess, had not any very pleasing or en- 
couraging prospects — it numbered only a very few members — 
and its meetings were held in a small room in the Assay 
Office. It had also, at that time, a most formidable rival, 
whilst but few of its own members interested themselves very 
strenuously in its progress. Now, however, the two bodies 
have become united, and I am rejoiced to say, that by union 
strength has been produced. Gentlemen, let us compare the 
numbers in this hall with those few men who sat in that 
little room, and recall, for example, the paper on the Yan 
Yean Water Works. I know of no subject more likely than 
that to interest the uninitiated ; and, although the prophet 
was in that instance at fault, he does not the less deserve our 
thanks for the calm and philosophic way in which he pursued 
his subject. He might have been wrong : but let these in- 
stances operate as beacons for our future guidance. Compare 
the subjects then brought under consideration with those 
now discussed. Those most interesting to the more scientific 
members may not be interesting to the general reader ; but 
there are still some couched in simple language, which I my- 
self can not only understand, but appreciate — most interest- 
ing papers on scientific subjects, embracing geography, mine- 
ralogy, physics, botany, and a number of others, which I 
merely mention as those which are of interest to the general 
reader. I regret, that in taking a hasty glance over the 
transactions and occurrences of the last year, that I have to 
allude to the loss of one — a loss, indeed, not only to the so- 
ciety, but to the profession of which he was an ornament, and 
to many friends with whom he was intimate, and by whom 
he was greatly respected. Passing over that unfortunate 
event, let me congratulate the Institute on the amount 

b 2 

4 Anniversary Address. 

of interest which the Government now evidently takes in 
its progress and success. I rejoice to see so many 
members of the Government present. Occupying the po- 
sition that I now do, it is of very little consequence to me 
who is in and who is out of power, although, notwithstand- 
ing that I am debarred from interfering with political matters, 
I cannot, as a citizen, exclude myself from taking some de- 
gree of interest in the actions of those who are in power ; 
and I hail, as a good omen, the fact of so many of my ho- 
norable friends supporting this Institute by their presence 
this evening ; and I trust that they will be prepared to support 
it, if necessary, by other and more substantial proofs of their 
regard. Not that I wish for State aid to an institution of 
this kind. On the contrary, I would wish to see the volun- 
tary principle applied to it, although I would not for other 
things. I would fain see science with some recognised habi- 
tation — where scientific men could meet together and exercise 
some influence on society, because, as it is, the world, I fear, 
is too apt to look upon the Institute as a wanderer upon 
the face of the earth, who has no known habitation; and, 
perhaps, it may be necessary to trouble the friends of the In- 
stitute, in order to establish it. So far, and no farther, would 
I wish to see a demand made upon the public purse. If the 
Legislature of this country chooses to place funds at the dis- 
posal of the society, it will, I have no doubt, expend them 
judiciously and honestly. What we want, are persons with 
a helping and a lending hand. This is required in the old 
country, and how much more is it needed here. I do not 
know the reason why, but, perhaps, it originates in the 
matter-of-fact disposition which is our main characteristic, 
Art, instead of following, precedes science. Observe, for 
example, the Exhibition, and look at art as compared with 
merely scientific institutions — the one is regarded as a subject 

Anniversary Address. 5 

of the greatest interest by the people, whilst the other is only- 
tolerable. It is not so in other countries. In Germany, for 
instance, the savans are satisfied to promote science for the 
purpose of eliciting truth and making discoveries in their 
various branches. But, with an Englishman, unless you can 
bring home to him the conviction that it is of some practical 
advantage, he will do little more than tolerate it. Surely, 
gentlemen, science should precede art — and not art, science. 
Surely, science, instead of pointing out some discovery, 
brought out by some mere manipulator, should itself point 
out the mode in which the particular principle might be ap- 
plied to the particular object. If, gentlemen, that principle 
is true at home, is it not with tenfold force true in this 
country ? Assume that all such were based on scientific prin- 
ples, I ask what would be the probability of success ? I 
need not enlarge upon those influences, for I have already 
alluded to them, though briefly. Look at education, as 
applied to the youth and to the adult. To the adidt, what 
salutary effects it must produce ; it will show him how little 
he knows and how much remains to be known. What do- 
cility and what patience it will require to convince him that 
amongst the few grains of truth which he has acquired, there 
is an extensive sea of error. How much better, therefore, 
he must be prepared to make allowances for all the errors of 
his brethren, when he is capable of recognising his own. Ob- 
serve also, gentlemen, the influence which it is likely to ex- 
ercise in unfolding the works of the Creator himself, and the 
praise which, in prosecuting these discoveries, he is involun- 
tarily offering up to the Creator, in the truths which he is 
unfolding to the world. Gentlemen, I proposed to have said 
much more to you, but I feel that, for an inaugural address, 
instead of writing, I have trusted too much to memory. I 
thank you for the patience with which you have heard my 

6 Anniversary Address. 

remarks, and for the honor conferred upon me, as well as the 
manner in which you have received the toast with which my 
name has been coupled. I trust that when I shall be render- 
ing up an account of my stewardship, you will think I am 
deserving of as enthusiastic a reception as that which you 
have now been good enough to accord me. 

Art. I. — Some Facts determining the rate of the Upheaval of 
the South Coast of the Australian Continent. By Ludwig 
Becker, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute, March 24th, 1858.] 

In October, 1855, I had the honor to read before the Philo- 
sophical Institute a paper containing some remarks on the 
changes in Australia, by upheavals. I then called attention 
to the fact that the land is still gradually rising, and expressed 
a hope that, with the assistance of tide-gauges, results might 
be gained, telling us how much the ground has risen in a 
given time. 

Since that paper was read, I directed my attention more 
closely to this subject, gathering as many observations as pos- 
sible concerning these upheavals; and the result of these ob- 
servations made by myself and others, here and elsewhere, I 
have now the honor to lay before the Philosophical Institute. 

The bottom of Hobson's Bay rose, in twelve months, four 
inches, according to the lines drawn on sheets of paper by 
the self-registering tide-gauge at Williamstown. These papers 
were kindly placed before me by Mr. Ellery, the talented 
superintendent of the Williamstown Observatory. That gen- 
tleman also told me, that, five years ago, he noticed many 
times that the foot of the old Williamstown flag-staff, which 
was only a little lower than the present one, was washed by 
high water, whde, at present, the whole space surrounding is 
covered with a green vegetation, and tents and other dwell- 
ings are now built on ground which was, a few years back, 
periodically flooded by the waters of Hobson's Bay. Between 
the old pier and the lighthouse, as is well known, a foot be- 
low the road, the ground consists almost entirely of dead 
shells, deposited there by the sea. I find embedded between 
the horizontal layers of these shells the skulls of sheep and 
bullocks, filled with clayey matter containing dead shells. 
The spot where these bones are still to be seen is at least four 
feet above the average level of the Bay. These remnants 
were not deposited there lately by human hands, but thrown 

8 Upheaval of South Coast. 

into the sea when the water, close at hand, offered itself as 
the nearest place for getting rid of the useless fragments. 
These observations were made on the west shore of Hobson's 
Bay, where no deposit of the river Yarra influences the change 
of the ground. A deposit from that river does influence a 
similar change, which is more visible on the south-east 
from the month of the river, along Sandridge, St. Kilda, and 
nearly as far as Brighton. The beach along these places ap- 
pears even more upheaved; but it is impossible to draw a cer- 
tain conclusion therefrom because of the interference of the 
Yarra deposit. 

In South Australia, so I learned from Captain Cadell, the 
railway between the City of Adelaide and the Port of Ade- 
laide rose, in the first year after its construction, nearly four 

Flinders, in 1802, found ten fathoms of water on a certain 
point in Lacepede Bay, where, on a late survey, only seven 
fathoms of water were found. 

The newspapers, a few days ago, brought word that the 
Government of South Australia have considered it necessary 
to re-survey the whole sea-coast of that colony, and have 
started a vessel to commence the work forthwith. 

It appears, therefore, that since the expedition of Minders, 
the soundings of that navigator are rendered useless by the 
action of subterranean powers. 

All these figures, when reduced to inches and months, 
show a rise of the land of about four inches per annum. The 
motion of the earth's crust in the southern part of Australia, 
so far as yet ascertained, is at present slowly upwards and 
permanent. Whether sudden rises, during or after an earth- 
quake, have happened, I cannot say at present. 

We hear that Melbourne was formerly visited by great 
floods, but the wharves near Flinders-street, the lowest part of 
the city, have not, in recent times been inundated by the 
Yarra, although rain and snow in the mountains have lately 
sent down great bodies of water. But if the wharves at Mel- 
bourne have risen about six feet during the last twenty years, 
their present freedom from floods is quite natural. 

I thought it worth while to draw the attention of the Phi- 
losophical Institute to these few facts. If further observa- 
tions should confirm what I have stated here, useful conclu- 
sions might be drawn therefrom, and the practical advantages 
become evident. I need only point out that care must be 
taken in forming piers, dams, breakwaters, &c, in Port 

Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 9 

Phillip and in similar places along the rising coast; and also 
in the selection of places for townships, wharves, and docks ; 
and, lastly, that it is important that our own coast be re-sur- 
veyed for the sake of the life and goods in ships approach- 
ing it. 

Art. II. — On the Reclamation and Cultivation of Batman's 
Swamp. By Alexander Kennedy Smith, Esq., C.E., 

[With a Plate.] 
[Read before the Institute, May 5th, 1S58.] 

Mr.' President and Gentlemen — In preparing this paper 
upon the reclamation and cultivation of Batman's Swamp, I 
have endeavoured to make it more a practical digest than a 
theoretical essay. 

Residing upon a portion of the Swamp, and having erected 
the City Gas Works there, I have had a greater interest in, 
and a wider field for observation, than those who casually or 
occasionally visit that locality. The result of these observa- 
tions is contained in this paper, which I have endeavoured to 
condense as much as possible, consistent with bringing the 
evil and its remedy fairly before your notice. 

This swamp is situated at the west end of this city, and is 
bounded by the Murray River and Mount Alexander Radway 
on the east and north ; by the Salt Water River and Foots- 
cray on the west ; and by the Yarra Yarra on the south. 
(See Plate.) 

All that portion of it that lies north of a line forming the 
continuation of Victoria-parade, or Victoria-street, running 
due west to Footscray, has been disposed of by the Govern- 
ment, and the extent of the major and remaining portion, 
after allowing a margin of three chains in breadth along the 
Yarra Yarra and the Salt Water River, and also allowing a 
reserve of 20 acres near the Powder Magazine and Railway 
Station for docks, is 1030 imperial acres. 

The surface of this large plain is lowest in the centre, by 
an average depth of 10 inches, and has no outlet either to the 
Yarra Yarra or Salt Water River. This hollow or basin is 
therefore the receptacle of surface water, and is principally 
supplied by the Moonee Ponds district. 

When a heavy rain falls, this basin is filled, and overflows 

10 Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 

into the Yarra and Salt Water Rivers. In the summer time 
the water is evaporated from this basin, again to be filled by 
the collected storm water in the rainy season ; or if a 
southerly breeze, a freshet in the Yarra, and a full moon 
should simultaneously occur, the greater part of the marsh, 
and in some cases the whole of it, has been overspread with 
water to a depth of several feet. In November, 1849, a com- 
bination of the above circumstances covered the swamp to a 
depth of 5 feet, and destroyed a considerable quantity of pro- 
perty and goods in the wharf stores, and in the lower levels 
of Flinders-street west. From marks made at the time of 
the flood, I find that the average depth of water over the 
swamp amounted, as said, to five feet. 

To reclaim this land from the inroads of the sea or bay, it 
will be necessary to guard its confines by an embankment to 
prevent a similar occurrence. This would do, as far as 
regards reclamation from the waters of the bay, but if used 
for cultivation, it must also be kept free, by drainage and 
pumping, from the storm water descending into the basin 
alluded to. 

In the ordinary state of the bay and river there is sufficient 
fall to drain the basin, and to keep the entire surface of the 
swamp free from water ; and it would only be in the event of 
having a continued rain, on the one hand, or the rising of the 
River Yarra, either by floods or the waters in the bay being 
ponded back, on the other, that arterial drainage by machinery 
would have to be resorted to. 

I will therefore advert to — 

1st. The method and cost of protecting the swamp from 
the inroads of the sea, and 

2nd. The method of keeping the reclaimed land free from 
storm water, and the cost of so doing. 

Upon measuring the irregular boundary of the entire 
marsh, as shown on the accompanying plan, I find that it is 
equal to 460 chains, or 5| miles, but as an embankment, for 
reasons to be hereafter given, would only require to be con- 
structed from the railway reserve, opposite the west end of 
Little Collins-street, round by the Gas Works, the banks of 
the Yarra, and the Salt Water River, to the punt, it would 
only measure 250 chains, or Z\ miles. 

The soil of the swamp varies from 12 to 26 inches in depth, 
and is composed of stiff alumina or argillaceous earth, strongly 
impregnated with salt and gypsum. Immediately beneath 
this, a stratum of sand, varying from six inches to two feet, 

plan or 



Seclia cf hml,„„l„„,„, „„,! ,;,„„/ 

I i ■/.,,..;,//, ;.',,;.„,. -■/... 

Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 11 

occurs ; after this sand is passed, a black retentive clay 
appears, and continues for at least a depth of 24 feet, but 
how much further I am unable to say, having only excavated 
to that depth. 

In order to make the whole of the swamp avadable for 
cultivation, it will be necessary to embank it on the south 
and west by an embankment 24 feet wide at the base, and 
five feet in height, thereby giving a total height of about 
eight feet above the ordinary level of the Yarra, when the 
surface level of that river is uninfluenced by unusual causes. 

In the formation of this embankment it is necessary, first, 
to cut a trench three feet in width through the top soil and 
the underlying stratum of sand, until the stiff retentive clay 
is reached ; this would be at a depth of about three feet, at an 
average. The material thus excavated would form part of 
the embankment above the surface level. After setting off a 
distance of 13 feet 6 inches on the inner or swamp side of the 
trench, I propose to excavate a canal 24 feet wide by 5 feet 
deep, for the threefold purpose of, first, obtaining the mate- 
rial to form the embankment ; secondly, to drain the swamp 
itself; and thirdly, that when partially full it may be used as 
a canal for the transport of manure and produce, in flat- 
bottomed barges. Care must be taken that the trench first 
mentioned is filled up with the stiff retentive clay, excavated 
from the canal, and that a wall of the same description be 
carried up in the centre of the embankment to its full height. 

This embankment in its course intersects some patches of 
the tea-tree scrub, as shown on the plan, which would neces- 
sarily have to be cut down. This scrub, judiciously used, 
could be incorporated in the bank, so as to prevent the softer 
material slipping, and also afford considerable protection to the 
bank itself, in the event of the river rising to an unusual height. 
The tea-tree scrub, either in the form of fascines or otherwise, 
would be used on the river side of the embankment only. 

By referring to the section of the embankment, it will be 
seen that to make this, the least costly method is to excavate 
the material upon the spot, and that its construction thus 
leaves the canal or drain, or both, fit for their intended pur- 
poses, without any extra expense having been undergone for 
their formation. 

I also propose to use the sand excavated (or a portion of 
it) to dress the top of the embankment, so that in all seasons 
there would be an excellent footpath from the city to the 
Salt Water River. 

12 Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 

At the present time, a considerable number of the inhabi- 
tants of the city go down the river to fish, but owing to the 
almost impassable state of the small creeks in the scrub, their 
sport is curtailed, and their pursuit rendered a questionable 

To make this embankment, main drain, canal, and raised 
footpath, would only require about £5000, or even less in the 
present state of the labor market, or about £5 per acre for 
the reclamation of above 1000 acres. 

This expense would have been considerably increased were 
it not for the possibility of another plan of a road being con- 
structed to Footscray, as a continuation of Victoria and 
Spencer streets to that rapidly-increasing township, and 
which I had the honor to suggest to a committee of its inha- 

The construction of this road would enable another canal 
to be cut direct between the Salt Water River and the Moonee 
Ponds Creek. 

As a sum of money will, in all probability, be placed upon 
the Estimates of 1859 for the construction of this road, it 
will not be necessary to advert to it more, than by saying that 
it will protect the swamp on the north from any inundation 
caused by the rise of the water in the Salt Water River, and 
that it will shorten the road between Footscray, Geelong, and 
Melbourne by 3^ miles. 

The plan I produce shows the proposed road and the rela- 
tive position of the places to be benefited thereby. 

Having adverted to the method of construction and cost of 
embankment, I will now proceed to describe the means to be 
used in keeping the swamp free from surface water, and the 
cost of doing so. 

In the ordinary state of the river, the arterial drains, or 
small canals shown on the plan, will have a sufficient fall or 
inclination to keep the marsh sufficiently dry for cultivation. 
As before described, the side canal from which the embank- 
ment is formed, is proposed to be cut to a depth of five feet, 
that is, an average of three feet beneath the layer of sand 
before mentioned; this sand, underlying the alluvial soil, 
will allow the water to percolate through the same, and drain 
off into the main channel. 

This will answer during the dry season, but during the 
rainy season, or a prevalence of southerly gales, the level of 
the river would rise so much as to pond the water back upon 
the surface of the marsh. 

Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 13 

In order to prevent this occurring, it would be necessary 
to have fly valves upon the main outlet ; such valves would 
allow the egress of the water whenever the surface level of 
the river subsided below a certain point, and would effec- 
tually prevent its ingress when rising. 

The water, then, with which we have to deal in draining 
the swamp, is simply that of the rain fall over its own surface, 
together with that from the higher levels which drain into the 
swamp and Moonee Ponds. 

This could be ascertained by taking the dividing point, 
commencing at Batman's Hill, and passing along the ridge 
of the high ground by the Exhibition Building, Parkside, 
and crossing the Castlemaine road near the University, pass- 
ing along by the new Cemetery towards Phillipstown, and 
heading Moonee Ponds creek, returning by Essendon and 
Flemington. The extent of this watershed I am unable to 
estimate, even approximately, not knowing the whole locality 
alluded to ; but from observation, I have found that during 
heavy rain storms, the whole of the water brought down 
from the Moonee Ponds district has been discharged from 
the swamp into the Yarra and Salt Water Rivers within the 
course of a few days, and here it must be borne in mind that 
this discharge is effected over a wide surface of uneven 
ground, partly covered with scrub, grass, and other obstruc- 
tives, and without any regular channel to allow its free dis- 

That the swamp might be successfully cultivated, it woidd 
be necessary to guard, as far as possible, against any and 
every contingency that might arise. With this view, I propose, 
at the main outlet from the swamp to the river, to have two 
windmills erected, to work scoop wheels when the level of 
the river is above the level of the water in the swamp. This 
would very seldom occur, and the difference of the level 
caused by the rise and fall of the tide, would allow a great 
portion of the retained water to flow away by its own gravity 
at low water. 

The constancy of the wind here, as a motive power, is 
generally admitted, and there are few days in the year with- 
out sufficient breeze to work the wheels alluded to. 

But here again I would adopt another precautionary mea- 
sure, viz., to erect a steam engine of sufficient power to lift 
the maximum amount of water ever known to have fallen 
upon a given drainage area in this district, in a certain time. 

As there are few days in the year when this engine would 

14 Reclamation of Batman's Swamp, 

be required to work, its maintenance, as a motive power, 
would be comparatively small. Steam could be got up in 
about two hours, and whenever the barometer indicated a 
heavy fall of rain, the fires could be lighted, and the engine 
be in effective working order as soon as the waters could 
accumulate and render its assistance necessary; but this 
would only be required in the event of not having sufficient 

The limited height the water would require to be raised, 
seldom or ever exceeding three feet, would allow an engine 
of 30-horse power to discharge water, with an average lift of 
18 inches, to the amount of 95,000,000 gallons per day, and 
this without allowing for any variation of tide. If to this we 
add the work that could be performed by the windmills in 
question, and also the quantity of water discharged by gravi- 
tation, it may fairly be presumed, that under even extraordi- 
nary circumstances, that the swamp would be kept as dry, if 
not more so, than other low-lying lands under successful 

The cost of erecting machinery for the purpose I have indi- 
cated would not exceed the sum before-named (£5,000) for 
raising the embankment, making a total of £10,000 for the 
reclamation of, say, 1000 acres of ground, and this adjacent 
to and partly within the bounds ofthemetropolisof this colony. 

This would amount to £10 an acre on the ground thus 
reclaimed, and it may be well here to inquire what induce- 
ments are held out for this expenditure ? There are many, 
apart from its cultivation, and yet necessarily connected 

In the report of the Local Board of Health for the city of 
Melbourne, for the year ending December 31st, 1857, it is 
stated that — 

" The position of the present manure depot, and the possi- 
bility of its removal to a more isolated locality, have been 
subjects of serious consideration with the City Council, by 
whom a committee was appointed to deal with them, but the 
difficulties have been found so great, as to prevent any action 
being taken in the matter. The committee have under con- 
sideration a scheme for laying a pipe track from the depot, 
for carrying off the drainage so as to prevent noxious exhala- 
tions therefrom, but the expediency or otherwise of putting 
the plan into operation, of course depends on whether or not 
any alteration can be advantageously made in the site of the 

Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 15 

Most of you are, I dare say, aware, and certainly our 
friends from North Melbourne and the University, that the 
immediate neighborhoods of North Melbourne, Parkside, the 
University, and the southern confines of the Royal Park, have 
been a long time, and are at present, polluted by the City 
Manure Depot. Night-soil and offal are sent out in large 
quantities from the city to that locality, and there stored in 
vast heaps and left to give off malaria throughout the neigh- 
bourhood, and no effective means have been taken to retain 
the value of the manure thus deposited by fixing the ammo- 
nia with charcoal. On the contrary, the sun, wind, and rain 
rob it of its fertilizing powers, and a useful and valuable 
manure becomes a positive and dangerous nuisance. The 
material stimulants necessary for the proper growth of vege- 
tables and cereals for the support of the animal economy, 
become, from mismanagement and misapplication, a nursery 
for the seeds of disease, and are changed to a curse instead of 
a blessing. 

Referring to the last clause of the paragraph before quoted, 
ec Whether or not any alteration can be advantageously made 
in the site of the depot V I would suggest the removal of 
the whole of the offensive material for the purpose of in- 
creasing, by proper application, the fertilizing power of the 
ground thus reclaimed. 

You will observe from the plan that I have shown, two 
main drains or canals, one for carrying down the flood waters 
of the Moonee Ponds district, and the other from the west 
end of Little Bourke-street, for the purpose of transporting 
the fluid sewage of the city, or upon it by a flat-bottom barge, 
the more solid material and other offal. 

By having a depot in the locality, the night-carts could be 
emptied of their contents into barges prepared for the pur- 
pose, and transported by means of these canals to any 
required portion of the swamp. 

This easy means of getting rid of the night soil and other 
manure in the more immediate neighbourhood of the city, 
would in itself confer a benefit upon the public at large, inas- 
much as the cost of cleanliness would be considerably 
lessened, whilst any existing nuisance would be turned to a 
useful and reproductive purpose. 

In a previous paper, read by me before this Institute, I 
suggested the propriety of the Sewerage and Water Commis- 
sion conveying the whole of the storm water, falling north of 
La Trobe-street, into the swamp, by means of a tunnel run- 

16 Reclamation of Batman's Swamp. 

ning underneath the high ground at the west end of the city. 
The whole of the fresh water discharged by means of this 
tunnel, during the heavy or prolonged rain falls, would be 
got rid of in the manner before described, but certain advan- 
tages would accrue from its presence under ordinary circum- 
stances, for the better cultivation of the swamp. 

The effectual drainage of the swamp would prevent the 
washing away of the embankment of the Mount Alexander 
and Murray River Railway. At present these banks are 
seriously injured during a high wind, by the wash of the 
water in the swamp, and although a considerable portion of 
the earthworks of this line, thus exposed to the action of the 
water in the event of floods, has been changed into a timber 
viaduct, owing to the unsoundness of the foundation, yet 
still there are other portions of the same line, the perma- 
nency of which would be greatly endangered, if not destroyed, 
by the recurrence of the floods of 1840 and 1849. 

It will thus be perceived that the Government have a direct 
interest in the reclamation of the swamp for the better pro- 
tection of their own works. 

I may here add, by way of parenthesis, that if at any sub- 
sequent period a greater area than I have set aside should be 
required for docks, the fact of the land being cultivated would 
in no way interfere^with its appropriation for that purpose. 

The same motive power applied to the drainage of the land, 
during storms, could be, with little or no extra cost, used for 
the purpose of irrigating the soil during the summer months. 

That the quality of soil in the swamp is worthy of culti- 
vation, may be generally admitted ; that its cultivation, as a 
sanatory measure, would be of benefit to the public, cannot be 
denied ; but, in order to remove any opinions to the contrary, 
I may state that I have made some experiments with regard 
to the capabilities of the soil. 

In the latter end of May, 1857, I prepared a piece of 
ground, by simply ploughing and harrowing, for a crop of 
Cape barley. This crop did exceedingly well, and the major 
part of it gave, after being cut, an after-growth equal to the 
first crop. No manure of any kind was used. 

In the month of December last I had the same ground dug 
over with the spade, into which I transplanted some orange 
globe mangold- wurzel, and this at the hottest part of the whole 
summer. The plants took the ground kindly, and have pro- 
duced roots of which those now exhibited are specimens, 
weighing, in some instances, 71bs. each. 

Reclamation of Batman's Sivamp. 17 

An argillaceous soil is best adapted for the growth of this 
root, and the presence of chloride of sodium still further 
augments the produce. The major part of the swamp being 
of that description of clay, heavy crops might be confidently 
expected. If to that soil we add other fertilizers rich in so- 
luble potash, such as the refuse of the city and its suburbs, 
crops of from 30 to 40 tons per acre might be realised, more 
especially as this root requires potash in large quantities for 
the perfection of both leaves and bulbs. 

The quantity here stated approximates in weight to the re- 
sults of the experiments I have made, making suitable allow- 
ances for drainage and the application of manure. 

The cultivation of this root is successfully carried on in the 
comparatively warm climate of the south of England, but 
being less hardy than the turnip, it is easily affected by frost 
— a disadvantage in Scotland, which I apprehend would not 
be felt here. 

I write with deference to the opinion of others better qua- 
lified to judge, when I say, that the cultivation of this root 
would result in greater advantages to the producer in this co- 
lony than in the British Isles. 

The scarcity of green meat caused by the arid heats of 
summer in this colony, renders the growth of this kind of 
food an object of importance, more especially to the proprie- 
tors of dairies in the neighbourhood of large towns. 

By proper attention, a succession of crops of Cape barley 
and mangold- wurzel may be obtained from the swamp, two 
in one season, the one immediately following the other, and 
by the application of liquid manure, the quantities per acre 
might be increased in no ordinary degree. 

Both in a sanatory point of view and as a remunerative 
speculation, the forming of an embankment round, and the 
draining and cultivating of the swamp, would result in advan- 
tages to the community at large, as well as to those who 
might invest their money for that purpose. 

I am not aware whether the present Government has the 
power of leasing the swamp in question ; but, in the event of 
its being able to give a lease, the duration of which would 
hold out sufficient inducements to capitalists, I doubt not of 
being able, in a few days, to form a company and raise the 
necessary amount of capital for carrying out the object in 

The removal of the manure depot from North Melbourne, 
&c, would meet with the cordial support of the medical 


18 On the Hirudo Australis. 

faculty, who here, as in all countries, are foremost in advo- 
cating the cause of sanatory reform, and who, with a total 
abnegation of self-interest, spend both time and money in 
endeavoring to prevent the consequences that must inevitably 
arise, either from the ignorance or culpable carelessness of 
those who are most interested. 

Having pointed out the evil and its probable remedy, I would 
observe that, totally independent of the benefits that would 
arise from the cultivation of the swamp in a monetary point 
of view, it is a matter of paramount importance to get rid of 
existing and dangerous nuisances. 

I lay these suggestions before the Institute, trusting that, 
in the importance of the subject, any imperfections will be 
overlooked ; and that, in a short time, some active steps will 
be taken to remove those causes which, sooner or later, will 
operate with fearful effect in decimating our population. 

Art. III. — On the Hirudo Australis. By Jos. Bosisto, 
Esq., President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Mel- 

[Read before the Institute, 5th May, 1858.] 

The difficulty of maintaining leeches in a healthy condition, 
away from their native waters, has induced me to make some 
experiments on the subject. 

I have succeeded beyond my expectations, not only in pre- 
serving them from disease, and lowering the per-centage of 
deaths to a trifle, but also in their production apart from their 
native haunts. 

This being the time of year when they yield their ova or 
cocoons, I thought, as the subject was novel, and partook of 
a scientific character, it might not be unpleasing to exhibit 
specimens of some kinds of leech to be met with in this 
country, and the cocoons of the Hirudo Australis, as well as 
give the result of my observations on the preservation of the 
leech in general. 

Leeches are to be found in most of the lagoons, pools, and 
creeks of this country, and although these contain a fair 
description of the blood-sucking leech, yet there are to be 
found those allied in appearance, as well as in the incapability 
of perforating the human skin, termed by Savigny the 
" Hoemopis Sanguisorba," or horse-leech. 

On the Hirudo Australis. 19 

The two descriptions of leech in general demand for blood- 
sucking are what are termed in Europe the green and the 
speckled, the latter being always preferred. 

The description given of the former, by acknowledged 
authorities, agrees nearly with the green leech found here ; 
whilst the speckled or true medicinal leech of Europe varies 
in appearance from that of the medicinal leech of Austraha, 
whilst its capabilities for drawing blood, without causing 
inflammatory wounds, renders it equal, if not superior, to the 
one of northern Europe. 

The green leech* is to be found in abundance in most of 
the swamps and pools, intermixed greatly with those of other 
genera ; and in some instances the true Australian medicinal 
leech is also found intermixed, requiring therefore great 
attention in the sorting of them. 

The best description of the medicinal leech in this country 
is to be found in the river Murray and its tributaries, and in 
no one instance have I met with, from these rivers, any 
description but that of the Hirudo Australis. 

General Chaeactees : * 

Back, dark olive, and sometimes approaching black, with 
four well marked bright yellow longitudinal lines, quite 
dorsal, the two outer dorsal lines being much wider than the 
inner ones. The marginal lines of the back partake of the 
same color as the belly, which is a deep ochre yellow, occa- 
sionally intermixed with olive green spots, but generally with- 
out them. Eyes, at least eight; body, narrow, oval, with 
about 100 segments ; belly, flat. 

On comparing this with the medicinal leech of northern 
Europe, it will be observed that it varies somewhat. 

A third kind of leech, often met with, a species of horse- 
leech, is characterised as follows :* back, light brown umber, 
with a jet black longitudinal line down its centre, with six 
scarcely perceptible lines of a slightly darker brown than the 
back, three on each side of the centre. Belly of the same 
color as the back. Eyes, ten. The leech, on the whole, oval. 

The plan usually recommended and" adopted by the conti- 
nental leech gatherers for preservation for a length of time 
entirely fails in this country. They recommend keeping them 
in wooden or earthenware vessels half-filled with water, 
having a layer of turf moss and charcoal at the bottom; 

* Vide plate accompanying Dr. Becker's Notes on Australian leeches in 
the present Volume. 

c 2 

20 On the Hirudo Australia. 

others recommend water alone, changing it every second or 
third day. 

Leeches, although very tenacious of life, hecome sickly 
soon, should the temperature be below 50 deg., or above 90 
deg. Fah. Under 50 deg. they are liable to a disease which 
appears in the shape of a ring round the body, gradually 
tightening until it destroys life. Exposed to a high tempera- 
ture, the water becomes speedily tainted and impure, as each 
leech throws off a slimy coat every fifth day ; this alone is 
sufficient to destroy life, as the decomposition of animal 
matter is very rapid in a temperature so variable as ours. 

The object of the charcoal is undoubtedly to prevent the 
rapidity of decomposition, as well as to assist them in extri- 
cating themselves from their worn-out coats ; and the turf 
moss is useful for the same purpose as well as for food. 

I am under the impression that their food consists not only 
of animalculse and larvse, but also of the coloring matter of 
the marls or clays. I have noticed that after remaining for 
some time in the yellow or blue clay, they assume a strong 
shade of either color. 

The plan I adopt for their preservation is simple, natural, 
and every way successful. For their preservation and culti- 
vation on a large scale, sink into the earth, in a place pro- 
tected from the sun and weather, a given circle ; bank well 
up the sides, and half fill with the finest red or blue marl or 
clay, made into the consistence of thick mud (the red clay is 
preferable), and in this place the leeches; cover it over with 
thin canvas or calico, to exclude from them the extreme rays 
of light, and occasionally sprinkle the top of the clay with 
fresh rain water. The leeches will make no attempt to rise 
above the surface of the clay, but suit themselves to the tem- 
perature by rising or sinking accordingly. 

By this simple plan of keeping them, they are not only able 
to clear themselves of their mucous coat, but can supply them- 
selves with such food as improves their condition, and ren- 
ders them more fit for the purpose required of them. 

The low lands of Germany, the lakes of Siberia, Bohemia, 
and other parts of Europe, which have supplied the markets 
for so long, are becoming rapidly exhausted. 

The demand for leeches on the Continent, and also Great 
Britain, continues to be enormous. It has been computed 
that 600,000 are monthly imported into London, over 
7,000,000 annually ; and that 3,000,000 are annually con- 
sumed in Paris. 

On the Hirudo Australis. 21 

Having succeeded in adopting a plan for their preservation 
that requires no labour and but little attention, I see no rea- 
son why they should not prove a remunerative article of ex- 
port from these colonies. 

All that is required to ensure a safe passage to Great Bri- 
tain for 1000 dozen is, that the clay should be of good quality, 
obtained some few feet from the surface, so as to be free from 
any impurity of the upper earth, moist, and packed in a half- 
cask of the diameter of 3 feet, the clay being 8 inches high, 
and occasionally moistening the top of the clay to prevent it 
becoming hard. Should any die, they will always be found 
on the surface, so that a change of clay is only necessary 
about every six months. 

The cocoons I have the honour to exhibit to the members 
of this Institute this evening, are the production of the Mur- 
ray leech, obtained from my own small conservatory, as 
before described — a proof sufficient that the plan I adopt is 
more in accordance with their mode of life than that I have 
previously mentioned. 

They bury themselves in the clay, some 6 inches from its 
surface, when they deposit their ova, which, being attached to 
a small pebble or to the sides of the reservoir, gradually in- 
creases in size. 

Dr. Johnson says the leech fixes itself to some object, and 
with its mouth fashions it into an oval body, called a cocoon. 

These cocoons are said to contain from 3 to 18 leeches. I 
have not observed more than 3 or 4 enveloped in a brownish 
jelly-like fluid, at first appearing like small, black spots, but 
as the time approaches for their piercing the cocoon, they are 
found lying attached on the whole length of the inner side 
of the capsule, with the posterior sucker attached to the thin- 
nest end of the cocoon, and in this manner they leave the 

The cocoons, when perfect, vary in size from, f to 1 inch 
in length, the smallest weighing about 8 grains, and the 
largest 25 grains. They generally pierce the cocoon in about 
40 days, if under a moderate temperature, but longer if kept 
at a low temperature. 

Their weight, immediately after piercing the cocoon, is one 
grain; their appearance of a brownish red color. If taken 
then and kept in water, they die generally in a few days. 
Their growth is said to be very slow, and must be so, for my 
own observation shows them to increase at the rate of about 
4 or 5 grains per annum. 

22 Diagnostic Notes on New or 

Some of the cocoons now exhibited contain a less amount 
of the spongy coating over the capsule than others, evidently 
showing that one of its uses is to supply nourishment during 
their imprisonment, for by placing one of these in the sun for 
a day or two, the young leeches penetrate the cocoon. 

I may state, in conclusion, that my observations have ex- 
tended over five years. 

Art. IV. — Diagnostic Notes on New or Imperfectly Known 
Australian Plants. By Dr. Ferdinand Mueller. 

[Read before the Institute 26th May, 1858.] 


Ximenia exarmata. 

Glabrous, thornless; leaves herbaceous, ovate or oblong, 
almost blunt; peduncles generally 3-7-flowered, rarely 
1-2-flowered ; petals outside smooth. 

On low stony ridges near the rivers Sutter and Mackenzie. 

A tall shrub with spreading branches. Leaves flat, 1-2 
inches, petioles 3-4 lines long. Petals lanceolate, yellowish, 
2| lines long, inside white-bearded. Filaments hardly 1 line 
long, glabrous. Anthers 1^ line long, linear. Style short, 

Evidently, according to Forster's brief description, allied 
to the New Caledonian Ximenia elliptica. The genus was 
previously unknown as Australian. 


Erythroxylon Australe. 

Glabrous ; stem shrubby ; leaves small, obovate or oblong, 
cuneate, blunt, flat, opaque, nearly membraneous, with 
indistinct areolate veins, and a short petiole ; their lower 
side paler ; stipules membraneous, deciduous, as long or 
shorter than the leafstalk, combined into a solitary del- 
toid binerved one; peduncles as long as the flowers, 
solitary or in fascicles, at the base with two deltoid or 
round bracteols; lobes of the deeply five-cleft calyx 
deltoid lanceolate; petals ovate-orbicular; styles 3, rarely 
4, free ; stigmas hemispherical ; drupe ovate, red, three- 

Imperfectly Known Australian Plants. 23 

In the Brigolow Scrubs of East Australia, as far north as 
the Burdekin River. 

A shrub several feet high, with compressed angulate 
branchlets. Leaves alternate or fasciculate, pale-green, 4-8 
lines long. Calyx in aestivation valvate, one line long. Pe- 
tals yellowish- green, as long as the calyx, with two ovate 
denticulate scales, \ line long, at the base. Anthers one- 
sixth of a line. Styles one line long. Drupe succulent, half 
an inch long. 

The nearest related species seems E. hypericifolium. Its 
wood probably yields a dye like that of many of its congeners. 


Hippocratea barbata. 

Glabrous, climbing, leaves on rather short petioles, char- 
taceous, ovate, rarely lanceolate, blunt, repand-crenulate, 
much longer than the cymes ; petals yellowish, lanceo- 
late, five or six time longer than the calyx, inside above 
the middle bearded ; anthers four-lobed. 

On the banks of rivers near Moreton Bay. Hill and 

A tall climber. Leaves from 1^ to 3 inches long. Flowers 
scented, with 5-6 petals. Anthers yellow. Style conical- 
subulate, green. 

The plant is allied to Hippocratea obtusifolia and pauci- 
flora, particularly in respect to its large flowers, but cannot 
be identified with any described Indian species. It is the 
only representative of the order hitherto discovered on this 

Cissus opaca. 
(Sect. Ampelopsis. ) 
Shrubby ; leaves palmate, often on long stalks, with 3-5 
leaflets, which are herbaceous, oblong, or cuneate-lance- 
olate, rarely ovate or linear, entire or sometimes in front 
toothed, sessile, opaque, beneath glaucous; umbells in 
paniculate cymes ; corolla three times longer than the 
calyx, green ; style short : stigma depressed ; berries 

In the Brigolow scrub of Eastern Australia. 

A tall vine, generally glabrous, sometimes slightly downy. 

It differs from Cissus Australasica (Transact. Phil. Soc. 

24 Diagnostic Notes on New or 

Vict. I. p. 8, C. hypoleuca Asa Gray, in Wilk. United States 
Explor. Exped.) in its smaller neither leathery nor stalked 
leaflets and pentamerons flowers. On this apt occasion I am 
anxious to describe another Australian vine, mentioned al- 
ready by Captain Stokes, which yielded in its young branches 
a pleasant acid antiscorbutic vegetable to Mr. Gregory's ex- 
ploring party in North West Australia, viz. : — 

Cissus acetosa. 
(Sect. Ampelopsis.) 
Erect, not climbing, herbaceous, soon glabrous; leaves 
pedate, consisting of from 5 to 9 herbaceous undotted 
leaflets; the lateral ones sessile on the secondary petiole 
and distant from the stalked middle one ; all oblong or 
cuneate-obovate, blunt, mucronulate, entire or in front 
minutely crenate- denticulate, beneath ■ paler ; panicle 
compound, contracted ; petals much longer than the 
calyx, inside dark purple ; stigma sessile ; berries ovate- 
globose, black. 
Stems several feet high, not shrubby, rather succulent. 
Petioles short. Length of leaflets 4 inches or less. Stipules 
broad triangular. Petals 1 line, berries 3 lines long. 

This remarkable plant forms the transit from Cissus to 
Vitis, differing from the latter genus in the solution of the 
petals, from the former in the absence of a style. 


Arytera foveolata. 

Branchlets, petioles and panicles more or less covered 
with a rust-brown velvet ; leaflets 4-6 on short stalks, 
ovate or lanceolate-ovate, blunt, entire, or repand-den- 
tate, glabrous, on both sides of almost equal colour, be- 
neath at the base of each lateral nerve slightly bearded 
and furnished with a foveole ; flowers small in wide 
racemose panicles; anthers almost velvety, cordate-ovate; 
carpels 2-4, beyond the base disconnected, broad-ovate, 
turgid, blunt ; valves thick, coriaceous, outside velvety, 
inside glabrous ; seeds nearly black, turgid, broad- ovate, 
perfectly involved in the arillus. 

In the forests of Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

A tall tree. Leaflets generally alternate, thin-coriaceous, 
2-4 inches long, \-\\ broad, with spreading nerves and nu- 
merous veins. Calyx shorter than one line, 5-cleft. Sta- 

Imperfectly Known Australian Plants. 25 

mens 6-8. Filaments very short, style rather thick, one line 
long, simple. Carpels 4-5 lines, seeds 2\ lines long. 
Arytera divaricata. 

Branchlets, petioles, and panicles covered with a thin rust- 
brown velvet; leaflets 2-4 on short stalks, ovate or 
ovate-lanceolate, blunt, entire or shghtly repand, gla- 
brous, nearly of equal colour on both sides ; panicles 
compound ; carpels oblong, blunt, 2-3, beyond the con- 
crete base divaricate, outside glabrous, inside densely 

In the woods around Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

Similar to the preceding species. Flowers unknown, 
The immature carpels akeady 4-5 lines long, 2 lines and less 
broad, and considerably compressed. 

Arytera semiglauca. 

(NepheliuiQ semiglaucimi, Ferd. Muell. coll.) 

Branchlets, petioles and panicles thin velvety, leaflets 2-4, 
almost sessile, ovate or lanceolate-ovate, blunt, entire, 
above glabrous, beneath glaucous and slightly downy, 
flowers small, in compound panicles ; carpels 2-3, brown 
to the middle concrete, round-ovate, compressed, outside 
and inside glabrous ; seeds brown, turgid, ovate, covered 
with a thin arillus. 

In the forest near Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

A middle-sized tree. Leaflets thin, coriaceous, H-3" long, 
with thin spreading nerves, veined; carpels about ^-inch long, 
tardily dehiscent, and sometimes also laterally bursting, for 
which reason the genus might be united Avith Spanoghea, and 
both again as subgenera with Nephelium. Seeds two lines 
long, shining, smooth, with fragile testa. Cotyledons a 
little bent. Eadicule directed towards the hilum. 

Spanoghea nephelioides. 

(Neplielium leiocarpum, Ferd. Muell. coll. ) 

Nearly glabrous ; leaflets 4-6, ovate-lanceolate, acuminate, 
entire beneath pale ; flowers paniculate ; style enclosed 
within the lobes of the fruit ; carpels 2-4, almost glo- 
bose, outward and inward glabrous, above the middle 
disjointed ; seeds large, depressed-spherical, shining 
black, except the summit enclosed in a red cupular aril- 

In the forests near Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

26 Diagnostic Notes on New or 

A middle-sized tree. Leaflets thin-coriaceous, with pro- 
minent spreading nerves and numerous anastomosing veinSj 
2-4 inches long, often alternate, contracted into a short pe- 
tiole. Calyx persistent, puberulous, 5 -parted in fruit, with 
ovate-lanceolate segments \ line long. Carpels measuring 
3-4 lines, coriaceous, smooth, breaking irregularly trans- 
versely. Seeds 2^-3 lines in diameter, polished, with a 
fleshy acidulous arillus, the red colour of which contrasting 
beautifully with the black crustaceous testa. Endopleura 
fulvid, membraneous. Cotyledons irregularly turned and 
folded. Radicule pointing to the hilum. 

This genus, as mentioned before, might be referred to 
Nephelium, and includes the Neph. tomentosum. 
Spanoghea connata. 

(Nephelium eonnatiuii, F.M. coll.) 

Leaflets 2-4, oblong or lanceolate-ovate, blunt, entire ; be- 
neath, as well as the branchlets, petioles, and panicles 
covered with a grey very thin velvet ; flowers panicu- 
late ; style quite exserted ; carpels 3-4, outside at last 
glabrous, connate into a depressed capsule, with blunt 
lateral lobes, downy inside ; seeds small, shining-black, 
enclosed in a red, cupular arillus. 
In wooded valleys near Moreton Bay. Hill and Mueller. 
A tree 30 to 40 feet high. Leaflets thin-coriaceous 2-4 
inches long, alternate or opposite, subsessile, above shining 
and glabrous, beneath opaque, with spreading nerves and 
netted veins. Fruit-bearing calyx short, with five del- 
toid lobes. Fruit about three lines long, 4-5 lines broad. 
Seeds measuring \\ line, depressed-globose. Arillus vi- 
vidly red. 

Harpulia pendula. 

(Planchon in herbar. Kewens.) 

Leaflets 2-6, chartaceous, glabrous, lanceolate-ovate, 
somewhat acuminate, entire ; calyx deciduous ; cells of 
the capsules as long as broad, inside glabrous. 

In the forests near Moreton Bay. 

Harpulia Hillii. 

Branchlets and panicles covered with a thin rust-brown 
velvet ; leaflets 2-12, coriaceous, glabrous, oval, blunt, 
entire ; calyx persistent ; cells of the capsule broader 
than long, inside tomentose, outside puberulous. 

In the virgin forests of Durando. W. Hill. 

Imperfectly Known Australian Plants. 27 

A tree 60 feet high ; leaflets sometimes, when fully- 
grown, 8 inches long and 2 broad, above more intensely 
shining than beneath, obliquely tapering into a short petio- 
lule, with spreading nerves and netted veins. Panicle 6 
inches or less long, simple. Pedicels often shorter than half 
an inch, with a basilar linear bracteole. Sepals imbricate in 
aestivation, broad ovate, 2-2£ lines long, outside and inside 
covered with a yellow-brown velvet. Petals 5, glabrous, 
oblong (white, according to Mr. Hill), 3 lines long ; no scale 
at their base. Stamens 5, with very short filaments. An- 
thers sagittate, one line long. Hypogynous disc very short, 
sinuate, with velvety margin. Style 1 line long, smooth, at 
last twisted. Ovary velvety. Capsule heart or kidney-shaped, 
carnulent, coriaceous, vitellinous, turgid, about one inch 
broad, bursting along its vertex. 

Cupani Onervosa. 

Branchletsandpanicles glabrescent ; leaflets 2-7, lanceolate, 
acute, repand-denticulate or entire, without dots, with 
spreading prominent nerves, on both pages glabrous ; 
flowers small, paniculate, apetalous ; calyx small, re- 
pand-denticulate ; capsule woody, roundish-trigonal, in- 
side tomentose. 

Along the Richmond River. C. Moore. About Moreton 
Bay. Hill and Mueller. 

Leaflets 2-6 inches long, generally alternate, on short 
stalks, above shining, beneath opaque. Capsule ^-1 inch 

Closely allied to the following species, still distinct. 

Cupania ocylocarpa. 
(All. Cunningham's Herb. ) 
Branchlets and panicles almost velvety ; leaflets 2-5, 
ovate, somewhat blunt, repando-denticulate or with re- 
mote sharp teeth, without dots, above glabrous, beneath 
at the base of the spreading prominent nerves bearded ; 
flowers small, crowded in racemose panicles ; calyx 
deeply five-cleft ; stigma sessile ; capsule woody, glo- 
bose-trigonal, at last outward glabrous, inward velvety ; 
seeds ovate, shining-black, three times longer than the 
pale bilobed arillus. 

On various parts of the east coast of Australia. 

A middle-sized tree. Tomentum thin, brown - yellow. 

28 Diagnostic Notes on New or 

Leaflets generally alternate, thin-coriaceous, on very short 
stalks, above shining, below opaque. Calyx about one line 
long. Capsule measuring 8-10 hues, inside often purple. 
Seeds two lines long, slightly compressed, with a red arillus. 

It appears nearer in its affinity to C. subcinerea, than to 
the other Australian species, viz.: C. Pseudorchus, C. Cun- 
ninghami, and C. anacardioides. 

Besides these and the preceding noble sapindaceous trees, 
two species of Schleichera, and many others belonging to this 
order, occur along the humid east coast of Australia, all as 
evergreen with horizontal umbrageous foilage, highly adapted 
for avenues, unless trees of greater rapidity of growth were 



(Meisn. gen. 18. Leticoearpon Ach. Rich. voy. de 1' Astrolabe, II. 46. Sert. 

Astrol., 18, nonBrideL) 

Calyx 5-cleft, persistent ; lobes semi-ovate, as well as the 
corolla with imbricate prse-florescence. Petals 5, ovate, 
alternate, with the lobes of the calyx inserted beneath 
the disk. Stamens 5, opposite to the lobes of the calyx, 
inserted to the sbghtly sinuate disk. Filaments subulate- 
linear. Anthers cordate, affixed above the base, introrse, 
two-celled, bursting longitudinally. Stigmas 3, very 
short, sessile, somewhat clubshaped, long cohering into 
a cone. Ovules ascending in two rows along the septa. 
Capsule bony, with loculicidal dehiscense, 3-5 valved, 
3-5 celled, or, through imperfect development of the dis- 
sepiments, one celled, few-or many-seeded. Seeds 
ovate, perfectly enclosed in the succulent arillus. Em- 
bryo straight, in the axis of a fleshy albumen. Cotyle- 
dons flat. Eadicle very short, next to the hilum. 
Smooth shrubs or small trees inhabiting the warmer parts 
of Australia, with alternate flat coriaceous ovate or lanceo- 
late net-veined leaves, which are entire or toothed and desti- 
tute of stipules, and with small minutely bracteolate panicu- 
late flowers. 

Denhamia xanthosperma. 

Branchlets almost terete ; leaves lanceolate, acute or 
acuminate, with rather long petioles, entire, be- 
neath pale from a powdery at last separating pellicle ; 
flowers panicidate ; filaments as long as the anthers ; 

Imperfectly Known Australian Plants. 29 

capsule trivalved, one- celled, large ; seeds yellow, many 
along each of the imperfect septa. 

In dry plains and rocky declivities of Arnhem's Land. 

A tall shrub or small tree, with generally pendulous 
branchlets. Leaves pale green, li-3 inches long, one-nerved. 
Panicles axillary, or terminal, often not as long as the leaves; 
secondary peduncles angular, generally cymose. Pedicels 
about as long as the calyx, with deltoid lanceolate bracteoles 
at the base. Lobes- of the calyx | line long. Petals pale 
greenish-yellow, smooth, \\ line long. Filaments measuring 
only h line. Anthers almost white. Ovary globose-ovate, 
imperfectly three-celled. Capsule ovate or nearly globose, 
1-1^ inch long, shining yellow, with three slight furrows, 
smooth. Dissepiments very narrow, with eight or less seeds 
to each, which are ovate, 3-4 lines long, and perfectly involved 
in a beautifully red arillus. Testa wrinkled-papillose. 

Denhamia heterophylla. 

Branchlets almost terete ; leaves ovate or lanceolate, acu- 
minate, entire or acutely toothed, or both pages of equal 
colour, provided with conspicuous petioles ; flowers pa- 
niculate ; filaments as long as the anthers ; capside 3-5- 
valved ; seeds black, one or a few on each septum. 

On scrubby ridges from the Gilbert River to the Burdekin 

Similar in almost every respect to the preceding species. 
Bark grey, wrinkled. The leaves are as variable as in some 
of the Capparis species, resembling in the young plants those 
of Xylomelum. Hence this tree occurs under that name in 
Dr. Leichhardt's journal, and in D. O, prod, xiv., p. 422, ad- 
not. Capsule pale orange, arillus red. 

Denhamia oleaster. 

(Melicytus ? Oleaster, Lindl. in Mitch. Trop. Austr., p. 383.) 

Branchlets nearly terete ; leaves linear- or narrow-lanceo- 
late, tapering into a short petiole ; flowers racemose ; 
filaments longer than the anthers; style short, cylindrical. 

On the Balonne Biver. Sir Th. Mitchell. 

A shrub several feet high. Leaves pale green, 1^-2^ 
inches long, ^-\ inch broad, acute. Bacemes on short pedun- 
cles. Lobes of the calyx semiovate, ciliolate, \ line long. 
Petals white, nearly 2 lines long. Filaments exceeding 

30 Diagnostic Notes on New or 

somewhat 1 line in length. Anthers cordate. Style 2 
thirds of line long. Stigma minute trilobed. 

Denhamia pittosporoides. 

Young branchlets angular ; leaves oblong-lanceolate, gra- 
dually tapering into a short petiole, crenate denticulate, 
on both pages of equal colour; capsule small, four- 
valved, four-seeded, perfectly four-celled. 

In the Araucaria Ranges on the sources of the Burnett 
River. C. Moore. 

Leaves more intensely green and stronger veined than in 
any of its congeners, 2-4 inches long, 6-10 lines broad. Calyx 
normal. Valves of the capsule about \ inch long, as well as 
the dissepiments bony. 

To Mr. Black, the intelligent keeper of the Hookerian 
Herbarium, I am indebted for identifying the two first spe- 
cies of this genus with Leucocarpon, an information which, 
without reference to authenticated specimens, hardly could 
have been obtained, since Richard described the fruit as sub- 
carnose. Mr. Black even believes, that Denhamia xantho- 
sperma is identical with Leucocarpon obscurum ; but the 
latter being found on the sub-tropical Eastern coast, and the 
former only hitherto on the fall of the waters to the north 
coast, I deem it preferable to hold the two distinct, until 
flowering specimens are procured of the Leucocarpon from the 
locality mentioned by Richard. Denhamia Oleaster and D. 
pittosporoides are too imperfectly known to render their 
position in this genus certain. I have referred all these 
plants to Celastrinese, since the flowers seem to point out a 
closer alliance to that order than to Bixaceae. If this view 
be adopted, the genus Denhamia will be placed near Put- 

Celastrus Cunninghami. 

(Catha Cunninghami, Hook, in Mitch. Trop. Austr., p. 387. Sect. Catha.) 

Unarmed, glabrous; leaves scattered, coriaceous, lanceo- 
late or narrow-linear, entire or rarely towards the apex 
denticulate ; pedicels axillary, solitary, fasciculate-race- 
mose, or rarely paniculate ; capsules small, obovate, turgid, 
bivalved, one-celled, one seeded; seeds ovate-globose, 
shining-black, enclosed in a pulpy arillus. 

From Port Jackson (where it was found by W. Woolls, 
Esq.), extending as far as North-west Australia. 

Imperfectly Known Australian Plants. 31 

A tall shrub, or small tree, with black -wrinkled bark and 
numerous branchlets. Leaves 1^-2^ inches long, 1-6 lines 
broad, generally acute, gradually narrowed into the base, 
veined ; the floral ones deciduous, leaving thus frequently a 
racemose inflorescence. Sepals nearly orbicular, \ line long. 
Petals ovate or round, pale greenish-yellow, twice as long as 
the calyx. Filaments very short, inserted to the outside of 
the disk. Anthers basifixed, ovate- cordate, \ line long. 
Stigma subsessile, bilobed. Ovary two-celled. Seeds 1^ 
line long, neither compressed nor angulated. 

Celastrus dispermus. 

(Sect. Catha.) 

Unarmed, glabrous; leaves thinly coriaceous, scattered, 
broad or lanceolate-obovate, entire, paler beneath ; 
racemes lateral and axillar, few or many-flowered; calyx 
four-cleft; capsule obcordate-ovate or roundish, bivalved, 
compressed, two-celled, two- rarely four-seeded ; seeds 
ovate, brown, only at the base covered with a thick 
fleshy arillus. 
In the Araucaria Forests, near Moreton Bay. 
A small tree similar to the following species ; capsules 
about 3 lines long, rarely three- valved ; seeds a little longer 
than one line. 

Celastrus bilocularis. 

(Sect. Catha.) 

Unarmed, glabrous, leaves scattered, thin- coriaceous, 
ovate or broad-lanceolate, obscurely crenulate or sharp- 
teethed, distinctly net-veined, below paler ; racemes 
axillary and lateral; capsule small, bivalved, ovate- 
globose, slightly compressed ; cells one- or two-seeded ; 
seeds enclosed in a thin arillus. 

On the shrubby banks of the rivers Dawson and Burnett. 

A small tree; leaves mostly 1^-2 inches long; capsules 
2 lines long. 

With Catha I refer also the genera Eucentrus and Poly- 
acanthus again to Celastrus. Besides the Celastrus Australis 
and the above-described celastrinaceous plants, I am ac- 
quainted with several other Australian ones belonging to 
this order, none of which, however, has been obtained in a 
state sufficiently perfect for description. 


Art. V. — On the Weir Mallee, a water -yielding Tree, the 
Bulrush, and Porcupine Grass of Australia. By 
John Cairns, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute, 16th June, 1858.] 

In compliance with the wish, expressed at our last meeting, 
I have endeavoured to embody, in as few words as possible, 
the remarks I made on that occasion, on the subject of the 
Weir Mallee, the bulrush, and porcupine grass of Australia ; 
and I would heg at once to acknowledge the great kindness 
of Dr. Mueller, to whom I am indebted for all the botanical 
descriptions which follow. 

The water-yielding Mallee, called the Weir Mallee, was 
known to the natives long before the arrival of the whites, 
who, however, in their explorations, have often sustained life 
by its use, and it is mentioned particularly by Mr. Eyre, in 
his work on Australian exploration. 

The water-yielding Eucalyptus is one of the many species 
which pass under the name of Eucalyptus Dumosa, extending 
from the desert tributaries of the Murray, westward, as far 
as Swan River, constituting those almost impenetrable scrubs 
called Mallee. Hitherto, it is by no means proved that only 
one solitary species of Eucalyptus yields Avater, and the 
subject is well worthy of further investigation. Any species 
of Eucalyptus inhabiting the scrub, not attaining the height 
of a tree, but of a low scrubby growth, is usually comprised 
under this name, thus rendering it difficult to identify with 
botanical precision the species which yields water. 

Dr. Mueller informs me that in the tropics of Australia, 
the Mallee Eucalypti have not yet been found, whilst in 
Central Australia only two species of Eucalyptus of shrubby 
growth exist, and these differing from those met with in the 

The existence of the Weir Mallee with its invaluable 
supply of water, is universally known by old bushmen, 
though I have met with some who never saw it to know it 
positively, not having taken the trotible to find out from 
the blacks which really is the tree. It is not met with in the 
dense scrub, but only on the edges of the plains with which 
the scrub is dotted, sometimes only of small extent, whilst on 

On the Weir Mallee, a Water-Yielding Tree. 33 

the contrary some present a vast open space of considerable 
width. During a recent visit to the Murray, -where I had often 
heard of this useful shrub, my friend, Mr. Peter Beveridge, 
rode with me into the Mallee, accompanied by one of his 
native stockmen, who, on our approaching the edge of one of 
the plains, at once pointed out the tree. It grows upwards of 
twenty feet high, and scarcely differs in appearance from those 
around to the eye of a stranger, but easily to be detected on 
the brownish tinge of its leaves being pointed out. Our 
black immediately proceeded to cut a yam stick about five or 
six feet long, which he pointed with his tomahawk, and then, 
tracing the roots by a slight crack discernible on the surface 
of the ground, he dug underneath it till obtaining space 
enough for the point of his stick, he pushed it under and 
then prized up the root as far as he could. Going further 
from the tree he repeated the operation until he had, perhaps, 
fifteen or twenty feet of the root laid bare. He now broke 
up the roots into lengths of three to four feet, and, stripping 
off the bark from the lower end of each piece, he reared them 
against the tree, leaving their liquid contents to drop into a 
pannikin. On holding a piece of root horizontally no water 
is to be seen, but the moment it is placed in an upright 
position a moisture comes over the peeled part, until the 
pores fill with water which drops rapidly. 

The natives when travelling in search of water, on finding 
the tree, usually cut off a large piece of the bark to serve as 
a dish, which they place at the foot of the tree, leaving the 
broken roots to drain into it, whilst they smoke a pipe or light 
a fire. The root, en being broken, presents to view innu- 
merable minute pores, through which the water exudes most 
copiously ; from a pint to a quart of pure water being pro- 
curable from a root of twenty to thirty feet long. Some 
roots which we carried with us to the home-station, gave out 
a little moisture the next morning, but the weather being 
excessively warm, rapid evaporation had no doubt taken 
place. The water which I now exhibit, is just as it drained 
from the root, in the month of March last, into a pannikin, 
the bottle never having yet been opened, and the results of 
the chemical analysis of the contents of a second bottle will no 
doubt be laid before us by Dr. Macadam, who kindly took 
charge of the same, with this view, at our last meeting. 

Mr. Peter Beveridge ascertained that water was procured 
from the roots of the Beefwood tree, a small tree described 
by Dr. Mueller, in the 14th volume of Professor De Can- 


34 On the Weir Mattee, 

dolle's Prodromus, as the " Hakea Stricta," but the quantity 
produced therefrom is so small as to render it, comparatively 
speaking, worthless ; in fact, the root must be sucked to 
obtain any moisture at all, which, as already described, is not 
thecase with the "Weir Mallee." 

Many explorers have been much surprised to find natives ex- 
isting where there was apparently no water to be found, either 
in roots or otherwise; but their surprise has been changed into 
admiration at another wonderful provision of nature, in the 
" murn," so called by the natives, but " mallee oak," by the 
whites. This tree is very like the " she oak," but with bark 
less rough and more silvery in color. The wood is very hard, 
like lancewood, and capable of taking a fine polish. When 
the trunk attains a diameter of about six inches, it becomes 
pipy, thus forming a natural reservoir, into which the rains 
of the wet season are collected — the branches of the tree, 
which join at the top of the stem, acting as conducting pipes. 
The narrow aperture prevents much evaporation, and the na- 
tives know how to obtain water here, where an inexperienced 
traveller would never dream of searching for it. To procure 
this water, the native ties a bunch of grass to the end of his 
spear, and then climbing the tree, dips his primitive piston 
rod — if I may so call it — into this singular well. Drawing it 
up again, he squeezes the water from the grass into his bark 
dish, and thus proceeds until he obtains sufficient for his pre- 
sent requirements. 

At our last meeting, Mr. Blandowski made some very in- 
teresting remarks, throwing considerable light on the subject 
of the nature of the soil on which the water-yielding mallee 
is generally found, and had I not been much pressed for time, 
I should have taken the liberty to apply to him for a few par- 
ticulars on that point, which would have been a valuable 
addition to this paper. 

The kumpung, or bulrush, which I exhibit, was brought be- 
fore the notice of this Institute some time ago, by Mr. Blan- 
dowski, and I merely call attention to it under an impres- 
sion that it might be advantageously brought into use as an 
article of export, capable of being manufactured at home 
into fabrics, where strength of material is required. It grows 
in considerable quantities in vast beds, extending over miles 
of country, and much of it being on the banks of the Murray, 
its shipment would be easy. 

Mr. Peter Beveridge informs me that the "kumpung 
springs up from the root, through the water, about the end of 

a Water -Yielding Tree. 35 

August, or as soon as the weather becomes slightly warm. 
When about a foot in length above the water, the natives pull 
it up and eat it for food in an uncooked state. In flavour it 
is very insipid, but extremely satisfying, and in this state is 
termed by the natives "joutey." It is full grown, or nearly 
so, by the time the waters recede, and remains green until 
the frosts come round, when it becomes quite brown, and, if 
not destroyed by fire, continues so until the young shoots 
spring up the following season; and so it goes on from year 
to year, until it becomes so thick as to be impervious to the 
sun, thus rendering the ground quite swampy and impassable 
for stock, therefore useless or worse than that." In the 
summer the natives dig up the roots, which they either roast 
or boil, and after masticating it and obtaining all the starch 
therefrom, they retain the stringy, fibrous parts in lumps, 
which the lubras carry about with them in their nets or bags, 
like careful housewives, until such be required for making 
strings or threads, which they afterwards net into bags, gir- 
dles, and other useful articles. The nets used for catching 
wild ducks, of which Mr. Blandowski gave us so interesting a 
description at the last meeting, must be of considerable size 
and strength, which convinces me that this is an article of 
commerce well worthy the attention of exporters. 

Dr. Mueller describes it as rather remarkable that this 
particular kind of Australian bulrush should have proved 
identical with the species found in Switzerland, the " typha 
shuttlewdrthi," and consequently its utility, as an article capa- 
ble of manufacture, may be easily proved in Europe. There 
are only two species found in Australia, but this particular 
variety has been found all over this vast continent, and used by 
many explorers as an article of food, on account of the starch 
it contains. The seed, consisting of a mass of soft down — 
called sometimes the " Murray down " — is very useful for 
stuffing mattr asses. The coolness of this material admirably 
adapts it for this purpose in a hot climate. 

The needle, or "porcupine grass/' exhibited on this occasion, 
which has so very well been called by explorers " Spinifex," 
on account of its forming such thorny barriers to travellers in 
the Australian deserts, does not, Dr. Mueller informs me, be- 
long to the particular genus described by Linnaeus under that 
name, but is the "triodia irritans/' and he states, on the au- 
thority of Mr. Gregory, that it is generally absent in the 
otherwise similar desert scrubs of Western Australia, although 
like species are encountered in Northern Australia. 

d 2 


Art. VI. — A few notes on two kinds of Australian Leeches. 
By Ltjdwig Becker, Esq. 

[With a Plate.*] 
[Bead before the Institute, 28th July, 1858.] 

While I was engaged in drawing Australian Leeches of two 
kinds, for the illustration of Mr. J. Bosisto's descriptive paper, 
I made a few observations whk- I think, will be found not 
quite valueless for distinguishing the true Australian medici- 
nal leech from others. 

Fig. 1 represents the back of the hirudo medicinalis of 
Australia ; three black lines are running longitudinally over 
the middle part of the back, and one black line along each 
side. The ground-color of the upper half of the body is a 
yellowish brown, while the under side (Fig. 2) is of a deeper, 
more rusty, hue. On some specimens, small black lines are 
seen across the belly, as in Fig. 3 ; but these are accidental 
and do not indicate a different species. The body of the true 
Australian medicinal leech is divided into 97 rings, and each 
ring is again very regularly divided by transverse folds (vide 
Fig. 5, showing part of the under side magnified) . It is pro- 
vided with four pairs of eyes, placed near the end of the head, 
as seen in Fig. 4 (magnified). The skin upon the inferior 
surface of the body has eighteen pairs of pores, exuding a 
mucous secretion ; four rings are between each pair of these 
pores (Fig. 5) . The cocoon (Fig. 7, nat. size) is covered with 
a sponge -like tissue, of an olive-green color (Fig. 6, nat. size) . 
Part of this tissue is magnified in Fig. 8. The cells, or meshes, 
of this tissue appear to be formed by flattened threads of a 
skin-like membrane, joined together in such a manner as to 
produce cells or meshes of different angular forms. That part 
of the sponge-like tissue which is nearest to the cocoon, has its 
meshes closed by a layer of skin, serving as the epidermis 
of the cocoon. Fig. 9 shows part of the epidermis, magni- 
fied. The cocoon is filled with a dark brown fluid, which is 
visible through the semi-transparent inner skin forming the 

* Since the completion of this Plate, it appears, after the examination 
of various specimens, that the following emendation is necessaiy. Fig. 10, 
besides the central line of a jet black color, there exists three faint brown 
parallel lines on either side.— [Ed.] 


Lu.dwi|J Becker del.ft.lith.. 

AnistraliaiiL LeecHies. 

Hamel tLoclier, inu 


On two kinds of Australian Leeches. 37 

sac or capsule of $te cocoon. The two magnified ends of the 
capsule are seen in Fig. 7. 

The so-called Australian horse-leech is represented in Fig. 
10,* showing the upper part of its body, where there is only one 
longitudinal black line in the middle of the back ; while the 
rest of the leech, above and below (Fig. 11), is of an uni- 
form dark rusty color. The body of this species has only 94 
rings, which are not longitudinally divided (as seen in Fig. 5), 
but have large, irregular folds, of no distinct character (Fig. 
13, magnified). The horse-leech has five pairs of eyes (Fig. 
12, magnified), but has the same number of pores on the 
under-side of its body as the medicinal leech. 

The tenacity of life which leeches of these two kinds have 
shown, while under my examination, is worth noticing. To 
enable me to make exact drawings, and to observe correctly, 
it was necessary, to keep the animal quiet, but it was also neces- 
sary to avoid the risk of a change in the color and other essen- 
tial characters of the animal, by death. Sulphuric ether was 
therefore tried, no chloroform being at hand ; but, a wrapper 
of linen, fully saturated with the ether, was found to be in- 
effective. It was necessary to plunge the leech in a vessel 
full of that fluid ; and, even after a few minutes immersion, 
the further addition of strong spirits of wine was required to 
render the animal motionless. By this time, however, it 
appeared actually dead ; a good deal of leech-blood was dis- 
charged, and the body was covered with a thick layer of the 
mucous substance. In this state it was cleaned and laid under 
the microscope. The process of observing and drawing had 
been continued for an hour or so, when the eyes, or rather 
the eye-lids (if that expression might be used), were observed 
to be in a peculiar opening and shutting motion, by which, 
each time, a minute drop of a fluid was squeezed out. The 
same operation was performed afterwards by the eighteen 
pairs of pores, which are in connection with glands yielding 
the mucous matter ; but this time they discharged sulphuric 
ether and alcohol which had entered the body, and very little 
of the mucous matter was perceptible. The leech was again 
placed in fresh water, and, after a very short time, it swam 
about as if nothing had happened. The horse-leech, especi- 
ally, showed this great power of resisting destructive influ- 
ences from without, which, perhaps, may be attributed to the 
greater mass of mucous matter it is able to surround itself with. 

Having put the specimens under observation into a bottle 
full of strong spirits of wine, they soon died ; and here I 

38 On an Australian Bat. 

found another sign by which to distinguish the true medi- 
cinal leech from the horse-leech, viz. : the former, in the 
spirit, changes his natural color little or not at all, while the 
skin of the horse-leech becomes grey, like ash. 

Melbourne, July 3rd, 1858. 

Art. VII. — On an Australian Bat. No. I. By Ludwig 
Beckek, Esq. 

[Read before the Institute, July 28th, 1858.] 
[With a Plate.] 

On the 14th of June last, I received a bat, which showed 
some peculiarities in habit as well as in its anatomical pro- 
portions. I thought it worth while to figure it, and to make 
an exact outline of the skull and teeth. I know that I risk 
bringing before you to-night an animal perhaps already known 
to some here or "at home," but it was and is new to me, and 
as I have not found it figured or described, either in Gould's 
work or in any other work accessible to me, I have made the 

Some gentlemen, while sitting round a chimney fire, at 
Oakleigh, near the Dandenong Kanges, were struck by the 
appearance of a little creature, emerging from a log of wood 
lying in the fire. The smoke and heat had awaked the 
animal and driven it from the resting place, which it had se- 
lected for its winter-sleep. It was caught and secured in a 
pickle-bottle, still containing some fluids and other matters 
not at all suitable to a flitter-mouse's palate. Some days 
afterwards it was placed in my hands, and I was glad to de- 
liver it from its certainly unpleasant confinement. After 
putting it in a warm bath, and after drying and warming it, 
I found it as lively as if fire and pickles had never exercised 
any influence upon it. When thrown in the air it flew about 
in my room for a short time, and then settled in a dark cor- 
ner, where it was soon very busy combing its fur with the 
hind-feet, and then drawing them, or rather the nails on them, 
in quick succession through its mouth, to clean them. With 
the lips, teeth, and tongue, the wings, or the membranes 
between the extremities, were cleaned, stretched, and ar- 
ranged. When replaced on a table, it walked about with 

On an Australian Bat. 39 

great rapidity, trying to shun the light ; and if laid hold of 
behind, and detained from reaching a shaded nook, turning 
round the head and biting at the detaining object with an 
angry hissing and whistling noise. It refused food and water, 
and when an insect or a small bit of meat was forced into its 
mouth, it was, as quick as possible, rejected. The moment the 
bat found itself in shade or under shelter, it fell asleep. The 
temperature of the inner portion of the mouth was 52^° Fah., 
while the surrounding air was 52°. The body showed 140 
regular pulsations during the space of a minute; but whether 
these arose from the action of the lungs or the heart, I was 
unable to ascertain. 

The extraordinarily small size of this specimen of vesper- 
tilio induced me to weigh and to measure it. The following 
was the result: — While alive (on the 18th June) the bat 
weighed two pennyweights and seventeen grains ; eight days 
later (on the 26th June) while still alive, the weight was only 
two pennyweights and eight grains ; there being a loss of nine 
grains, or about one grain in every twenty-four hours. It died 
on the last -mentioned clay, and the post mortem examination 
gave many indications that, although the organs and tissues 
were in full and good condition, the proximate cause of death 
was probably starvation and unseasonable disturbance of the 
animal's natural state of hibernation. The specimen was a 
male one. The body had the following proportions: — whole 
length, from tip of nose to root of tail, not quite one inch 
and half; length of tail, one inch; extreme span of wings, 
six and three-quarter inches. The colour of the body, dark 
brown on the back, grey on the under side, and lighter grey 
under the chin ; feet black ; membrane of the wings and tail, 
purplish-brown in color, and not covered with hair, with the 
exception of a few near the root of the tail. Dentition as 
follows : — 

2. 2. 1. 1. j. 1. 1. 3. 3. t 14 _ „„ 

Incisors : upper, the first, two lobed; the second, simple and 
smaller; the lower, three lobed and very small. Canine: 
upper, strong, a little curved ; lower, like the upper, but only 
half the size of it. False molars : above, longer than the 
true molars, sharp-pointed ; below, the first, two lobed and 
smaller than the true ones, the second, sharp-pointed and 
larger. True molars : above, first and second nearly equal, 
with three sharp tubercles externally and a low sharp ridge 
internally, the third with only two and half tubercles, but 

40 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

otherwise like the two first. The lower molars have two 
sharp-pointed ridges externally, and three ditto internally. 

It appeared to me that this bat is very likely the smallest 
of its kind yet known in Australia, and indeed, perhaps, even 
the smallest mammal yet anywhere discovered. I compared 
it with Gould's " Scotophims picatus," of which he says : — 
-" This pretty little bat, which is the smallest and one of the 
most interesting of the true scotophili, inhabiting Australia, 
&c. ;" and Captain Sturt, on the same subject, says — " This 
diminutive little animal flew into my tent at the depot, at- 
tracted by the light. ... •" but the specimen before you is 
full half an inch shorter in the body, and two inches smaller 
between the wing-ends. 

Should it be found that the specimen here in question is a 
member of a yet undescribed species, I venture to propose for 
it the name — Vespertilio pygmseus. 

Explanation of Plate : 

Fig. 1, 2, 3, natural size ; 4, magnified about double natural size ; 5, 
6, 7, S, ditto four times ; 9, 10, ditto eight times. 

Melbourne, July 1S5S. 

Art. VIII. — Some hitherto unknoion Australian Plants. 
Described by Dr. Ferdinand Mueller. 

[Read before the Institute IStb August, 1S5S.] 


Methorium integrifolium. 

Clothed with starry velvet-hair ; leaves oval, almost entire, 
short-stalked, beneath net-veined ; stipules subulate, 
deciduous, shorter than the petioles ; cymes axillary, 
sessile, few-flowered; teeth of the calyx acute, three 
or four times shorter than its tube ; column of stamens 

On rocky declivities of the sandstone table-land of the 
Upper Victoria River. 

Leaves l|-2 inches long, generally 1 inch broad, on both 
pages of equal color. Cymes several times shorter than the 
leaves. Calyx about J inch long, exceeding the Linear-subu- 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 41 

late bracteoles. Laminae of petals lh line long, exserted; 
claws biauriculate. Tube of filaments enclosed. Anthers 
kidney-shaped. The fruit has not been found. 


MyHophyllum dicoccum. 

Lower leaves pinnate, with capillary opposite or alternate 
segments ; upper leaves alternate, linear or lanceolate, 
entire, toothed or pectinate ; flowers axillary, sessile ; 
fruit consisting of two carpels, which are glabrous, trun- 
cate, round at their back and hardly tubercled. 

In lakes, rivers, and lagoons towards the Gulf of Carpen- 

The habit of the plant is that of certain forms of M. 
variifolium. Flowers at least in part hermaphrodite. Stigmas 
purple, long bearded. Stamens seemingly 4. Fruits solitary, 
about § of a line long, slightly tapering upwards, rounded at 
the base, in exceptional cases augmented to 3 or even 4 


Calandrinia uniflora. 

Annual, glabrous ; stemless, or with an erect naked stem, 
producing a bunch of leaves at the apex j leaves longer 
than the stem, terete, acute, glaucescent, without any 
furrow; peduncles terminal, thin-filiform, thickened at 
the apex, one-flowered, twice or thrice longer than the 
leaves, with 2 or 3 cordate-lanceolate acuminate remote 
deciduous bracts; petals 8-11, lanceolate, almost three 
times longer than the orbicular- cordate sepals ; stamens 
numerous ; style none ; stigmas 3-6 ; capsule as far as 
the middle four-valved. 

On arid plains and ridges on the Victoria River. 

Root pale, descendent, simple, with few fibres. Stem often 
red, \-\\ inch long, at times undeveloped. Leaves and 
peduncles united, as the case may be, in a radical or terminal 
fascicle ; the former 4 inches or less long, hardly thicker than 
one line. Peduncles erect, or adscendent, smooth, producing 
the bracts chiefly in their lower part. The latter hyalinous, 
clasping, very tender membraneous, scarcely one line long. 
Sepals measuring two lines, rather acute, dropping in age. 

42 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

Petals pink, about 5 lines long, persistent when faded. Fila- 
ments considerably shorter than the corolla, of unequal 
length, white, capillary. Anthers sagittate-ovate, white, fixed 
between their lobes, several times shorter than the filaments. 
Pollen yellow. Stigmas white, filiform, about one line long, 
adscendent. Capsule ovate or nearly globose, J inch long. 
Seeds numerous, with their white funicles affixed to the 
basilar placenta, shining, black, perfectly polished, lenticular, 
measuring | of a line. 


Calycothrix arborescens. 

Glabrous ; branchlets numerous, slender, spreading ; 
densely torulous-cicatrisate ; leaves very small, densely 
imbricate, cordate- or rhomboid-lanceolate, acuminate, 
with broad sessile base, above flat, beneath convex and 
somewhat keeled ; stipules exceedingly minute, subulate, 
much shorter than the cicatrix, and to its centre inserted ; 
flowers polyandrous ; bracteoles free, orbicular- cordate, 
acuminate, not much longer than the pedicel, but nearly 
three times shorter than the cylindrical calyx-tube ; 
lower portion of the calyx-lobes almost ovate, upper part 
drawn out into a long acumen, but without a proper 
bristle, somewhat scabrous, not reaching beyond the 
lanceolate pointed white petals. 
In arid bushy plains towards the sources of the Roper and 
Limmen Bight rivers. 

A tall, most beautiful shrub, sometimes forming a tree 
fully 25 feet high. Leaves, in drying, extremely deciduous, 
those of the younger branchlets f-1 line, those of the older 
ones 1-2'" long, all spirally arranged, their fall rendering the 
thin branchlets like those of C. microphylla, strangely sculp- 
tile by the innumerable little grooves of the cicatrices. Brac- 
teoles greenish, scarcely longer than one line. Tube of the 
calyx tapering towards the base, yet not towards the apex; seg- 
ments of the limb pale yellowish- green, 2-2V long. Anthers 
roundish- cordate, terminating in two glands. Style longer 
than the white filaments. 

The nearest allied species is Cal. microphylla, A. C. In 
C. arborescens and the following species is a clear transit to 
Lhotzkya observable, which genus may well be united with 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 43 

Calycothrix brachychaeta. 

Leaves linear-triangular, crowded, glabrous or pubescent, 
almost blunt, stalked ; flowers sessile, collected in leafy 
spikes ; bracteoles free, dilated at tbe truncate and 
ciliate apex, as long as tbe silky- downy tube of the 
calyx, or but little shorter, pointed by the apex of the 
keel ; lobes of the calyx lanceolate, outside downy, gra- 
dually terminating in a ciliate acumen, but scarcely in a 
distinct bristle; petals white, lanceolate, acuminate, 
almost as long as the calyx-lobes ; stamens 15-20. 
On stony ridges along the rivers Victoria, Fitzmaurice and 

A tall shrub. Leaves 2-3 lines long. Tube of the calyx 
1^-2 lines long, slightly contracted towards the summit, 
hardly longer than the lobes. 

This species bears, amongst its numerous congeners, only 
comparison with C. conferta and the following one. 

Calycothrix achaeta. 

(Sect. Lhotzkya.) 

TLhotzkya cuspidata, Ferd. Meuller, in Hooker's Journal of Botany, 1856, 
page 324.] 

Hirtellous ; branchlets very short, crowded ; leaves on 
short stalks, very minute, densely imbricate, oblong- 
triangular, almost blunt, above one nerved, beneath 
scarcely keeled ; stipules, none ; flowers sessile ; brac- 
teoles free, obcordate, fringed, keeled, apiculate, £ 
shorter than the calyx-tube ; lobes of the calyx ciliate, 
ovate or cordate orbicular, cuspidate by a short acumen, 
not much shorter than the ovate silky-downy tube, with- 
out manifest bristle ; petals white, narrow, oblong-lan- 
ceolate, of twice the length of the calyx-limb ; stamens 
12-17 ; gland of the anthers conspicuous, double. 
On the sandstone table land of Arnhem's Land. 
A shrub 5-8 ' high. Leaves never much longer, often 
shorter, than one line. Tube of the calyx about one line 
long. Anthers round, yellowish. Style of equal length with 
the longer filaments. 

Referring to Chamselauciese, I may mention, on this 
occasion, that the Homaloxalyx ericaeus is to be combined 
with Tryptomene, as Tr. homalocalyx. 

44 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

Melaleuca symphyocarpa. 

(Sect. Asteromyrtus.) 

Branchlets almost terete and petioles slightly downy; 
leaves alternate, shining, oblong-lanceolate, flat, blnnt, 
5-9 nerved, thinly veined, tapering into a broad but very 
short petiole ; flowers in free axillary and lateral heads ; 
lobes of the calyx deciduous, nearly semiorbicular ; pha- 
langes penicillate polyandrous, orange, with a long and 
thin claw; capsules boney, perfectly united in a globose 
head, three-celled; valves short-exserted; seeds wingless. 

On the sandy or gravelly banks of the Roper, Limmen 
Bight and Macarthur rivers, also on sometimes inundated 
localities of the neighbouring plains. 

A large, very handsome bush, sometimes attaining the 
size of a small tree. Bark fissured, black, not lamellar. Leaves 
bright green, generally \\-2\ inches long and 6-9 lines broad. 
Flowers varying from 8 to 15 in each head. Tube of the 
calyx already in early age connate, yellowish or red, more or 
less velvety ; lobes green. Bracteoles downy. Petals spa- 
thulate- orbicular, 1^ line long, glabrous, yellowish, half sur- 
passing in length the calyx-lobes. Columns of the stamens 
3-6 lines long, with the free portions of the filaments, which 
are 2-3 lines long and fasciculately but not flatly arranged, 
forming exactly a brush, at last deciduous. Anthers about 
J line long, purplish red, after foecundation black, didymous, 
fixed with their back, terminating in a small gland. Pollen 
almost free of color. Style smooth, orange or yellow, hardly 
as long as the stamens. Stigma green, peltate. Pruit 
heads measuring about half an inch, beautifully areolate by 
the vertex of the capsules. Seeds brown, 1 line long, clavate- 
filiform, truncate. 

There exists no character by which Schauer's genus Aste- 
romyrtus can be separated from Melaleuca. The same in- 
tenability of generic distinction is manifest between Symphy- 
omyrtus and Eucalyptus, and the limits of the genera Lepto- 
spermum and Fabricia are likewise so far infringed, that I do 
not hesitate to unite them respectively. 

M. globifera agrees in its brief specific characteristics, 
offered by R. Brown, with Mel. symphyocarpa, but the former 
is restricted to the south coast ; nor does it fully accord with 
the generic note promulgated by the immortal R. Brown, in 
Aiton's Hort., Kew, iv., 410. 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 45 

Melaleuca minutifolia. 

Glabrous ; branchlets numerous, generally opposite, ex- 
tremely slender ; leaves very small, opposite, sessile, 
ovate or lanceolate, acuminate, towards the base in- 
curved, crowded, slightly spreading, deciduous ; capsules 
spicate along the branches, globose-ovate, truncate or in 
age almost hemispherical, three-celled; seeds wingless. 
In barren localities of North Western Australia. 

A tab 1 , shrub. Leaves about f-H lines long, in drying re- 
markably deciduous. Branchlets at the insertion of each 
pair gradually contracted, with rather conspicuous cicatrices. 

It differs from Melaleuca tamariscina, its nearest congener, 
as follows : the arrangement of the leaves is not a spiral one, 
and after their fall the branchlets do not assume in conse- 
quence that truly screwlike appearance which characterizes 
Melaleuca tamariscina, although they are also singularly 
grooved and often more slender still ; the leaves are neither 
closely appressed, nor are any of them blunt and subcordate, 
nor is the fruit-rachis velvet-downy. I have not yet seen ripe 
fruit of M. tamariscina, nor the flowers of either species, 
from which, probably, many other marks of discrimination 
may be derived. 


Cucumis jucunda. 
Leaves cordate, undivided, somewhat angular, with minute 
and remote teeth ; petioles shorter than the leaves, or at 
least of equal length with them ; tendrils simple, their 
lower portion hispidulous; lobes of the calyx filiform- 
linear; ovary velvety; fruit small, ovate, powdery-downy, 
at least three times shorter than the peduncle; seeds 
numerous, their length that of the third or fourth part 
of the fruit diameter ; funicle very short. 

In Arnhem's Land and on the Gulf of Carpentaria, parti- 
cularly on the banks of rivers, also in eastern tropical Austra- 
lia, and in Central Australia observed with certainty as far 
south as Cooper's River. 

Stems long, trailing or climbing, as well as the branches, 
with 5 blunt angles. Petioles, peduncles, stems and branches 
hispid with short, spreading bristles. Leafstalks angular, 
cylindrical, with a superficial furrow. Leaves 1^-4 inches 
long and broad, above hispidulous-scabrous, beneath along 

46 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

the nerves and veins imperfectly hispidulous, otherwise sca- 
brous-downy. Tendrils 1^-3 inches long, upwards spiral. 
Flowers monoecious, a few congregated and arising from the 
leaf-axis, with short peduncles. Lobes of the calyx 1-1^ line 
long, appressed ; tube villose, in the male flowers longer than 
the lobes. Corolla yellow, deeply five-cleft, inside glabrous, 
outside slightly downy or a little hispid; the lobes ovate, 
apiculate, \-% inch long. Stamens of the male flowers gyrose, 
connate with the rudimentary pistil; anthers 5, in 2^ pairs, 
almost sigmoid. Disk of the female flower yellow, patellar. 
Style green, smooth, upwards thickened. Stigmas three, 
greenish, scarcely longer than 1 line, nearly ovate, flat in 
front, convex at the back, each separable into two. Rudi- 
mentary stamens wanting. Pepo rather sweet, of a pleasant 
taste, exactly egg-shaped, irregularly six-celled, scarcely 
longer than one inch, not angular, simply green, covered with 
very minute almost powdery hair, which causes an acrid irri- 
tant sensation to the taste, but are almost spontaneously lost 
in age, when the fruit assumes a pale colour. Seeds ovate- 
cuneate, about 2\ lines long, surrounded by a slightly tumid 

This cucumber is the Cucumis pubescens mentioned in Sir 
Th. Mitchell's Trop. Austr., p. 110, but evidently not the 
true Willdenowian plant, as pointed out in the report on Mr. 
Gregory's plants from Cooper's Creek. The genuine may 
be sought, perhaps, in the following species. It is possible 
that the C. pubescens of Asa Gray, Unit. Stat. Expl. Exped., 
p. 646, belongs to this species. 

Cucumis picrocarpa. 

Leaves in circumference cordate, 3-5 lobed, their lobes 
repand- denticulate, somewhat angular; petioles as long as 
the leaf, or at last somewhat longer; tendrils undivided, 
everywhere hispidulous; lobes of the calyx filiform-linear; 
ovary villous- woolly ; fruit sub trigonal- ovate, with some mi- 
nute scattered bristles, not half as long as the peduncle, 
which is tumid at the apex ; seeds very numerous, many times 
shorter than the fruit- diameter ; funicle long. 

In many parts of tropical Australia. 

It differs from the preceding, besides in the above charac- 
ters, also in the lobes of the calyx and corolla, which are of 
twice the size, in finely white-and-grey-spotted fruit, which 
is constantly 2-3 inches long, regularly six-celled, of ex- 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 47 

tremely bitter taste, whilst the seeds, notwithstanding the 
double or triple size of the fruit, are barely as long as those of 
Cucumis jucunda, and are attached to a funicle which exceeds 
their own length. 


Canthium vaccinifolium. 

Glabrous ; branchlets in two rows, recurved, more or less 
spinescent ; leaves thick coriaceous, small, orbicular or 
ovate; peduncles axillary and terminal, 1-2-flowered; 
pedicels shorter than the calyx ; corolla to the middle 
four-cleft; faux bearded; filaments shorter than the 
oblong anthers; stigma bifid, with blunt base; berry 

In barren scrubby localities near the rivers Burdekin, 
Suttor, M'Kenzie, Dawson, and Burnett, accompanied by 
Canthium oleifolium. 

A shrub 6' high or still higher, with numerous spreading 
branches. Leaves blunt or emarginate, flat, entire, 2-5 lines 
long, above slightly shining, beneath paler and opaque, one- 
nerved, hardly veined, their stalk \-% line long. Stipules 
\-\ line long, 1 line broad, entire, deciduous, with a very 
short acumen. Peduncles one line or less long. Pedicels 
sometimes obliterated, at the base with extremely minute 
bracteoles. Calyx tube half-ovate, without ribs, scarcely one 
line long, with four very small acute teeth, one or the other 
sinus occasionally producing also a minute tooth. Corolla 
pale yellow, funnel-shaped, outside glabrous, inside above the 
middle of the tube white bearded; lobes lanceolate-ovate. 
Stamens inserted between the lobes of the corolla. Fila- 
ments very short, glabrous. Anthers sulphur-yellow, blunt, 
at the base a little emarginate, § line long. Pollen bright 
yellow. Style filiform, green, smooth, l\ line long. Stigma 
ovate, bifid, \ line long. Berry globose, succulent, 2-3 lines 
long, rather sweet, with two nuts, which are nearly ovate, 
black, slightly tubercled, very convex at the back, slightly so 
in front, about 1^ line long. 

The plant may, with equal right, be referred to Canthium 
or Psychotria. 

Canthium coprosmoides. 

Glabrous ; leaves thinly coriaceous, ovate, flat, entire, blunt 
at the apex, tapering into the petiole ; peduncles none ; 

48 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

pedicels axillary, solitary or two or three together, 
scarcely as long as the calyx ; lobes of the corolla 5, 
rarely 4, half as long as the tube, above thin velvety; 
faux bearded ; anthers ovate, almost sessile ; stigma 
hemispherical ; berry red. 
In scrubs on ridges along the rivers Dawson, Mackenzie, 
and Brisbane. 

Shrub from 6-10 feet high. Leaves 1 to Z\ inches long, 
their stalk 1^-3 lines long, above dark-green and shining, 
beneath a little paler, finely veined. Stipules from a broad 
base subulate, 1^-2 lines long, deciduous. Calyx at first 
bell-shaped, scarcely longer than one line, with five acute and 
very short teeth. Corolla funnel-shaped, outside glabrous 
and yellowish ; its tube \ inch long ; its lobes ovate. An- 
thers | line long. Style bristlelike, glabrous, not exserted. 
Stigma slightly concave in the centre, half a line in diameter. 
Berry naked, 3-4 lines long, upwards a little broader, with 
two nuts. 


Blackwellia brachybotrys. 

Leaves ovate or rhomboid, or round -ovate, tapering into a 
short petiole, smooth, their margin repand; raceme 
short, almost spicate; flowers small, slightly downy ; 
tube of the calyx hemispherical ; its lobes 6-7, linear, 
rather acute; petals but slightly or nearly half-exserted, 
oblong-lanceolate; glands velvety; stamens 6-7; styles 
4-6, below their apex slightly downy. 
On granite rocks, near the origin of the Gilbert River — 

A small tree with spreading branches; branchlets grey, 
brown, at last blackish, terete. Petioles 3-4 lines long, almost 
terete; leaves thin- coriaceous, one-nerved, net-veined, opaque, 
on both sides of equal color, 1-2 inches long. This species is 
closely allied to Blackwellia axillaris (Lam. illustr. 412); it 
differs principally in its short racemes, and in in the form of 
the petals and calyx-lobes. Racemes terminal and lateral, 
rarely longer than one inch, often shorter, on short peduncles, 
with several or many flowers. Bracteoles at the base of each 
pedicel ternate, brown, triangular, persistent; all, but parti- 
cularly the lateral ones, very minute. Calyx 1 line long, its 
lobes not touching each other with their margins in aestiva- 
tion, at last spreading, as well as the ribless tube pale yellow 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 49 

green. Petals 6-7, sessile, white, at least for a long while 
persistent. Filaments capillary, smooth, one line long. An- 
thers minnte, didymous, white-yellow, affixed betwixt the 
cells. Styles white, about a half line long, subulate, divergent, 
with united bases. Vertext of the ovary free. Ovules several, 
pendulous. Eipe fruit unknown, but only 1 or 2 ovules ad- 
vancing to maturity. 

Mr. Allan Black, the custos of Sir Wm, Hooker's herba- 
rium, first pointed out the position of this plant in Homa- 
lineae, justly alluding to its resemblance with Homalium, and 
observing that the homalideous order had not been previ- 
ously noticed in Australia.,' 
Ammannia crinipes. 

(Sect. Cornelia.) 

Annual; stems adscendant or procumbent; branches thread- 
like; leaves linear or oblong, blunt, somewhat fleshy, 
slightly scabrous, tapering into a very short petiole; 
peduncles axillary, solitary, one-flowered, capillary, 
crowded towards the summit of the branchlets, twice or 
many times longer than the leaves; calyces tetragonous- 
campanulate, bluntly four-lobed; sinus-teeth indistinct; 
petals four, white, ovate; capsules very tender, nearly 
ovate, perfectly immersed in the calyx, irregularly 
_ In moist, sandy flats, and on the sandy-gravelly banks of 
rivers in Arnhem's Land. 

A singular little plant, from a few inches to a span high, 
sometimes rooting along the stems. 


Bauhinia Carroni. 

(Sect. Lysistemon.) 

Leaflets oblique-ovate, glabrous, longer than the petiole, free 
to the base ; corymbs few-flowered, nearly sessile ; pedi- 
cels and calyces brownish-silky; tube of the calyx cam- 
panulate, with attenuated base; its teeth 5, short; petals 
imbricate, unequal, ovate and ovate-oblong, two or 
three times longer than the calyx, not spreading, out- 
ward scantily silky; filaments unequal, exserted, all 
fertile, free; anthers oval; pods oblong, flat, few-seeded; 
their stalks not adnate to the calyx. 


50 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

From Newcastle Range to Darlings Downs, chiefly in the 
Brigalow Scrubs. 

A large shrub, or more frequently a small tree. Bark of 
the branchlets smooth, at last black. Leaflets about twice 
as long as the terete petiole, \-i inch long, rather tender, 
green, opaque, 4-5-nerved, finely veined. Stipella in the 
sinus of the leaflet-pair, shorter than one line, rusty brown. 
Corymbs terminating the branches, but when the latter are 
reduced to mere innovations apparently axillary or lateral, 
few-flowered, with a short or no peduncle. Pedicels crowded, 
solitary, 2-3 lines long, upwards gradually thickened, at the 
base provided with three lanceolate-subulate bracteoles, 
which are shorter than one line, brown, silky, and early 
falling, calyx 4-6 lines long, sometimes teethless and oblique 
truncate, not membranous. Petals dark red, free, upper one 
ovate, about \ inch long, on both sides scantily silky, taper- 
ing into a claw shorter than one line. Lateral petals of the 
form of the upper one, which they cover, but a little larger, 
and inside glabrous. Lower petals oblong-ovate, 4-5 lines 
long, outside silky, inside nearly glabrous, with a claw mea- 
suring 1^-2 lines. Stamens all fertile, free, the upper ones 
but little, the lower ones long exserted. Filaments filiform, 
dark or pale red. Anthers oval, versatile, hardly one line 
long, yellow with red margin. Pollen golden-yellow. Stalk 
of the ovary longer than the petals. Style pink, 2-4 lines 
long. Stigma convex, oblique terminal. Pods two to four 
inches long, one inch broad, blunt at the apex, acute at the 
base ; their stalk slender, often fully an inch long. Seeds 
compressed, roundish-ovate, brown, smooth, 3-4 lines long, 
slightly angular. 

I name this stately plant to acknowledge permanently the 
arduous services which were rendered by Mr. Carron in the 
last disastrous expedition of Mr. Kennedy. A perusal of the 
sorrowful account, published by Mr. Carron, of this unfortu- 
nate journey, will likewise render evident how far he, in 
throwing so much light on the vegetation of North-East 
Australia, deserves the small tribute of botany paid to him 
on this occasion. 

Bauhinia Leichhardtii. 
(Seot. Lysistemon. ) 
Leaflets orbicular- or broad-ovate, as long as the petiole, free 
to the base, at last glabrous; corymbs few-flowered on 
very short peduncles; peduncles, pedicels, and calyces 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 51 

covered with a brown velvet ; teeth of the bell shaped 
calyx almost deltoid, as long as the tube ; petals ovate 
and ovate-oblong, velvet-silky, not spreading, with short 
claws ; filaments free, all fertile ; pods oblong, flat, few- 
seeded, their stalk not adnate to the calyx. 
Not rare in Arnhem's Land and around the Gulf of Car- 

A small or middle-sized tree. This species, which I have 
named in memory of Dr. Leichhardt, who, like Allan Cun- 
ningham, referred to it repeatedly in his journal, resembles 
very much the Bauhinia Carroni, but differs, besides in the 
above notes, by the following characters : — 

The leaves are downy whilst young, somewhat larger, the 
pedicels longer, the pods broader, and the seeds larger. 
Bauhinia Carroni commences with the Brigalow Scrub to 
occur where Bauhinia Leichhardtii ceases to exist. Whether 
the differences pointed out between the two species are, as it 
seems unlikely, caused by the diversity of the climate in the 
respective tracts which they occupy, remains yet to be ascer- 

Bauhinia Hookeri. 

(Sect. Lysistemon.) 

Leaflets broad-ovate, glabrous, as long as the petiole, free 
to the base ; peduncles, pedicels, and calyces somewhat 
downy ; corymbs few-flowered, on very short peduncles; 
calyx funnel-shaped, its oblong lobes scarcely shorter 
than the tube; petals orbicular, spreading, outside 
slightly silky, nearly three times longer than the calyx- 
lobes; filaments free, all fertile, and exceeding the 
petals ; anthers hastate-oblong ; pods oblong, flat, few- 
seeded ; their stalks not adnate to the calyx. 
In the Brigalow scrubs from Newcastle Bange to the 
Burnett Biver ; also sometimes on trachytic rocks, between 
basalt boulders, and in the dry gravelly beds of rivers. 
A tree of small size, sometimes a shrub. 
Branchlets terete, smooth, glabrous, gray. Leaflets |-1" 
long, opaque, 5-7-nerved, veined. Stipella, lanceolate- 
subulate, spadiceous, about 1 line long. Corymbs terminal, 
solitary or twine, on short peduncles, few-flowered, of agree- 
able scent. Pedicels solitary, 3-4 lines long, downy. Basilar 
bracteole ovate-lanceolate, about 1 line long ; the two lateral 
ones inserted a little above the base of the pedicel, opposite, 

e 2 

52 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

somewhat smaller, lanceolate-subulate, all deciduous. Calyx 
green, not membranous, almost funnel-shaped, scantily 
downy, valvate in aestivation, equally 5-cleft ; its lobes lance- 
olate-oblong, three-nerved, 3-4 lines long; tube oblong- 
cylindrical, very indistinctly ribbed, about half an inch long. 
Petals imbricate in aestivation, nearly of equal form, 9-10 
lines long, pale red or nearly white, bi-lobed at the base of 
the lamina, inside almost glabrous, their claw \ inch long. 
Filaments compressed filiform, almost of equal size, about 1| 
inch long, glabrous, towards the base pale, towards the apex 
dark red. Anthers attached in the middle of their back, 2 
lines long, hastate-oblong, yellow with red margin. Pollen 
golden yellow. Style compressed filiform, red, about half an 
inch long, smooth. Stigma peltate, smooth, green. Stalk 
of the ovary downy, |-| inch long. Pod oblique-oblong, 
compressed, 2-4 inches long, about one inch broad, 3-6- 
seeded. Seeds shining-brown, smooth, oblique, kidney- 
shaped or roundish-ovate, compressed, varying in length 
between 4 to 7 lines. 

I have in grateful veneration attached to this noble plant 
the illustrious name of the Nestor of botanists, who has given 
in our science one of the very few examples of unremitting, 
ever disinterested labours continued to the most venerable 

It is yet unknown which species of Bauhinia extends to 
extra- tropical latitudes on Cooper's River, where one member 
of this genus was observed both by Captain Sturt and Mr, 

Bossiaa phylloclada. 

Glabrous, leafless; branches broad- winged ; branchlets 
compressed, leaf-like, long-lanceolate, blunt, with alter- 
nate remote large teeth, with a thick midrib and spread- 
ing nerves ; pedicels arising from the apex of the nerves, 
solitary, naked towards the summit, provided at the 
middle with two opposite bracteoles which are widely 
remote from the basal bracts j keel and standard twice 
as long as the wings ; the former as well as the calyx 
woolly fringed; pods stalked, oblique-oblong. 
On the edges of the sandstone tableland, and on stony 
declivities, and barren bushy undulations of Arnhem's Land. 
A good-sized shrub, with many spreading branches ; calyx 
3 lines long ; its upper lip large, with blunt lobes, the lower 
one with narrow lanceolate teeth; corolla yellow, petals of 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 53 

the carma spathulate-obovate, below the middle and at the 
apex disjointed, \ inch long, with long claws; wings ovate; 
column of stamens slit in front ; style capillary, glabrous ; 
stigma minute. 

Mirbelia aotoides. 

Branchlets terete, with appressed downs ; leaves scattered, 
or fasciculate, linear, entire, scabrous, with refracted 
margins, and a very short recurved mucro ; peduncles 
wanting; pedicels solitary or twin, shorter than the 
calyx ; bracteoles linear, very short, fixed to the base of 
the pedicel ; upper lip of the silky calyx broad, emargi- 
nate, or with two very short blunt lobes ; lower lip with 
three deltoid teeth ; wings about as long as the standard, 
longer than the keel ; pod smooth, short-stalked, per- 
fectly two-celled, two seeded. 

On sterile mountain ranges near the Burnett River. 

A diminutive erect slirub, resembling somewhat the smaller 
forms of Aotus villosa. Leaves 4-6 lines long, i-f line broad, 
on very short, almost obliterated petioles, not distinctly 
veined ; calyx about 2 lines long ; flowers seen in a faded 
state only, apparently of the color of Mirbelia grandiflpra ; 
vexillum broader than long, smooth ; keel blunt ; ovary' and 
style glabrous, the latter 1£ line long; pods measuring 
nearly three lines ; the septa arising from both sutures touch- 
ing each other. 

This ambiguous species forms a transit to Aotus on account 
of its bractless calyx, and to Phyllota, which produces also no 
strophiole. Amongst its congeners it is evidently in nearest 
contact with Mirb. grandiflora, which seems, according to the 
figure in Bot. Magazin. f. 2771, to be also devoid of calycine 
bracteoles, but it differs in the form of the calyx and leaves, 
and in a smooth ovary. No ripe fruit being found, it is not 
certain whether the endocarp separates in the manner of 
other Mirbelia?. In some points it agrees with Mirbelia flori- 
bunda. I may remark on this occasion, that the genus Oxy- 
cladium is to be placed in the section Mirbelia?, next to 
Leptasema, differing from that genus and the allied ones in a 
persistent replum of the pod, by which an approach of it is 
manifest to Carmichselia. No species of Mirbelia have hi- 
therto been detected in the territory either of the colony of 
Victoria or of South Australia, although many species are 
known from East and West Australia. 

54 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

Psoralea pustulata. 

Suffruticose, erect, covered with short appressed hair and 
conspersed with glandular tubercles and minute warts ; 
stems simple ; petioles almost as long as the leaflets ; 
stipules large, hastate- or lanceolate-ovate, acuminate ; 
leaves consisting of three leaflets, except the uppermost, 
which are simple ; leaflets ovate or lanceolate, blunt, 
with a short mucro, perfectly entire, ribbed by con- 
spicuous lateral nerves ; racemes rather dense, on short 
peduncles, axillary, solitary, twin or ternate, hardly 
three times longer than the leaflets ; bractea nearly 
round, acuminate ; pedicels ternate, several times 
shorter than the calyx ; teeth of the latter acute, the 
lowest a little longer than the rest; pod laxly enclosed in 
the calyx, kidneyshaped ovate, compressed, rostellate, 
covered with sessile scutellar glands, connate with the 

On the banks of the rivers Victoria and Nicholson. 

Stems several from each root, 5-10 feet high, flexible, 
terete, without furrows, rarely branched, sometimes decum- 
bent, as well as the petioles, peduncles and leaves tubercled ; 
petioles 1-2 inches long ; stipules 5-6 lines long ; leaflets 
cuspidate, 1^-2^ inches long, f-1^ inches broad, with pinnate 
nerves, grossly dotted with immersed glands, flat, of equal 
color on both sides ; racemes rarely divided ; bracts 2-3 lines 
long, ciliolate, otherwise glabrous, glandulous ; calyxes about 
4 lines long, glandulous-tubercled, green, with bleaching 
tube, upper lip bifid ; vexillum round, glabrous, outside pale, 
inside purplish, obscurely callous, with its deltoid unguis 4-5 
lines long, surpassing a little the length of the wings and of 
the carina ; wings purple, oblong, with a roundish white, 
basilar appendage, and a narrow unguis ; carina straight, 
blunt, adherent to the wings, divided towards the base, white 
with purple summit ; anthers round - didymous ; stamens 
diadelphous, 9 connate to near the apex ; style smooth ; pod 
smooth, glandulous, 2-3 lines long ; radicle half as long as 
the cotyledones. 

Psoralea leucantha. 

Suffruticose, erect, glabrous, branched, dotted with glan- 
dular points ; petioles almost as long as the leaflets ; 
stipules lanceolate-subulate; leaves consisting all of three 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 55 

leaflets, which are narrow-lanceolate, rather acute, mu- 
cronulate, with entire or slightly repand or denticulate 
margin, and thin lateral nerves ; racemes on short pe- 
duncles, axillary, solitary or 2-4 together, at last as long 
as the leaflets ; bracts broad- or lanceolate-ovate, acumi- 
nate ; fruit bearing pedicels nearly as long as the calyx ; 
teeth of the calyx acute, those of the upper lip short ; 
pods brown, kidney-shaped, ovate, rostellate, compressed, 
wrinkled by sessile glands, longer than the appressed 
calyx, connate with the seed. 

On the sandy, sometimes inundated, banks of the Victoria 
River, and its tributaries. 

A strong-scented plant, several feet high, closely allied to 
the preceding species. Corolla white ; the keel with a blueish 
spot at the apex. 

Psoralea balsamica. 

Shrubby, erect, covered with innumerable small brown 
glandular warts ; petioles about half as long as the leaf- 
lets ; stipules from a broad base linear-subulate ; lower 
leaves trifoliate, upper ones simple ; leaflets oblong or 
ovate, blunt, emarginate, ribbed by prominent lateral 
nerves, terminated in a short mucro, irregularly denti- 
culate, as well as the branchlets and petioles scantily 
downy ; corymbs hardly as long as their peduncle, axil- 
lary and terminal with several crowded pedicels ; the 
latter ternate and much shorter than the calyx, as well 
as their axis clothed with soft spreading down, almost 
glandless; bracts small, glandulous, ovate-roundish, 
acuminate ; calyx downy, tubercled ; its upper lip deeply 
bifid, a little longer than the lower one ; teeth all nearly 
lanceolate, acute ; pods broad-ovate, velvet-silky, com- 
pressed, not rostellate, laxly enclosed in the calyx, con- 
nate with the seed. 

On the margin of rocky creeks flowing into the Nicholson 
and Van Alphen rivers. 

A shrub, 4-8 feet high, not spreading, of a strong balsamic 
odour. Leaflets 1-1^ inch long, densely conspersed with 
glandular tubercles and subtile dots. Peduncles \-\\ inch 
long, bearing flowers only towards the summit. Calyx nearly 
3 lines long. Flowers blueish. Anthers cordate-ovate. Fila- 
ments diadelphous, connate to almost the apex. Style 1 line 
long, glabrous. Pods measuring scarcely 2 lines. 

56 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

Zornia chcetophora. 

Glabrous, densely dotted with glands; stems erect, perennial, 
many branched; leaflets twin, long or narrow lanceolate, 
acute ; stipules minute, triangular-lanceolate, acumi- 
nate ; spikes terminal, on long peduncles, with numerous 
flowers ; bracteoles lanceolate, almost five-nerved, with 
slightly ciliated apes and an acute protracted base ; 
pods 3-5-jointed, with copious long upwards scabrous 
bristles, and also hispid; joints broad-semiorbicular ; 
seeds quite smooth, shining, brown-black. 

On sand ridges and on the sandstone table-land in the 
interior of Arnhem's Land, and thence towards central Aus- 

A herb 1-2 feet high, with many dichotomous, slender 
stems. Petioles often an inch long. Leaflets 1-1^" long, 
1-4'" broad. Peduncles 2-5" long, erect, or slightly spreading. 
Bracteoles 3-4"' long. Flowers yellow. Calyx membraneous, 
whitish, ciliate, on the lower side somewhat downy. Stamens 
only towards the base connate. Anthers of the shorter fila- 
ments oblong-linear, of the longer ones ovate. Joints of the 
pod 1|" long. Seeds measuring 1 line. 

Pluchea. Cass. 

(Sect. Oliganthenram.) 

Involucre cylindrical, with narrow-lanceolate scales. Female 
flowers 2-3, hermaphrodite sterile ones 1-2. Pappus 
bristles of the fertile acheniums numerous, indistinctly 
biseriate ; those of the barren acheniums with no or 
only one or two bristles. 

Pluchea filifolia. 

(Oliganthenram filifolium, Ferd. Miieller's herbar. North Austr. Expd.) 

Annual, glabrous ; leaves thread-like ; flowerheads axillary 
and terminal; hermaphrodite flowers three -toothed, 
female ones with an exceedingly narrow ligule ; fertile 
acheniums densely fulvous-silky. 

In arid localities in the south-eastern part of Arnhem's 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 57 

Root undivided, slender, often flexuose, a few inches long. 
Stems a span long .or shorter, spreading-branched, slightly 
scabrous. Leaves alternate, very narrow linear, curved, in 
consequence of their revolute margins filiform, \-l inch long, 
awnless. Peduncles more or less shorter than the involucre, 
which is 4-5 lines long ; its scales in a few rows, green, at 
last brownish, sessile, with scarious margin, glabrous, the 
outer ones very short, the inner ones gradually longer, the 
innermost linear and running out in a subulate acumen. 
Receptacle very small, convex, tubercled. Corollas about 2 
lines long, whitish; female ones extremely thin, with widened 
base, their ligules two-toothed, shorter than the capillary 
branches of the style. Hermophrodite corollas filiform ; their 
style short-exserted, undivided. Fertile acheniums scarcely 
longer than one line, with attenuate base and truncate sum- 
mit ; their pappus 2 lines long, brownish-yellow. Barren 
acheniums diminute. 

Calotis plumulifera. 

(Sect. Acantharia.) 

Annual, dwarf, slightly hispid ; stem erect, branched; leaves 
oblong-lanceolate, perfectly entire or remotely toothed, 
tapering at the base, the upper ones sessile ; flowerheads 
small, pedunculate ; scales of the involucre lanceolate 
acute ; receptacle conical ; ligules white ; acheniums on 
both sides woolly with plumose downs, at the margins 
expanded into an acutely dilated wing, which is fringed 
with feathery hair ; awns numerous, capillary, shorter 
than the achenium or nearly as long as it, unequal, in 
their whole length ciliated by short spreading or re- 
curved hair. 

On the Murray plains. 

An herb 2-4 inches high, with the habit of a Brachycome. 
Root thin, simple, flexuose. Leaves ^ to § of an inch long, 
1-2 lines broad. Peduncles axillary and terminal, sometimes 
an inch long, often shorter, bracteate by one or the other, 
small leaf. Flowers in each head numerous ; the inner ones 
about 1 line long, perfectly barren, although hermaphrodite, 
with undivided style ; the outer ones varying from 10 to 20 
in number, of which some are occasionally abortive. Ligules 
with a lamina 1-1^ line long, \-% line broad. Achenium- 
wings with a sinus descending from the vertex to the outer 
or middle point, thence tapering wedge-like, glabrous on 

58 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

their sides. Bristles of the pappus generally more than 20, 
the longest one line long. 

Calotis tropica. 

(Sect. Acantharia. ) 

Glabrous or slightly hispid ; rhizome perennial, fibrinous ; 
stems numerous, erect, much-branched, angular ; leaves 
linear, acute, tapering into the base, the upper ones 
gradually smaller, all entire ; scales of the involucre 
linear, acute, scabrous ; ligules white; acheniums small, 
hispidulous, with a thick ciliolate margin ; awns 8-10, 
unequal, retro-aculeate, the longest three times shorter 
than the achenium. 

In North-West Australia, generally in dry beds of rivers. 

An herb, about one foot high. Leaves from \ to \\ inch 
long, \-\\ line broad. Flowerheads small. Receptacle 
broad-conical. Inner flowers sterile. 

It is evidently allied to Calotis breviseta, of which the 
brief diagnosis does not suffice for recognition. If the C. 
tropica should prove a variety of that species, then still the 
above record of this plant will be acceptable, as not only its 
precise habitat was unknown, but also in showing how great 
changes this species is apt to undergo. All the other species 
of Calotis are restricted to extratropical latitudes. 

Erigeron ambiguum. 

(Sect. Euerigeron, ) 

Erect, branched, glandulous and hispidulous downy; leaves 
sessile, lanceolate, quite entire or grossly and remotely 
toothed; capitules corymbose, on long peduncles, hemis- 
pherical ; scales of the involucre linear, acuminate, im- 
perfectly fringed, almost as long as the ligules ; central 
flowers few, indistinctly toothed; acheniums linear- 
oblong, moderately compressed, scantily appressed- 
hairy, half as long as the pappus ; bristles of the latter 
15-17, free, scabrous. 

On the Gilbert River. 

Probably a perennial herb. Lower leaves about \\ inch 
long, upper ones gradually shorter. Outer scales of the in- 
volucre | line, inner ones about 1 line long, scarious at the 
margin. Female flowers very slender, with a short narrow 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 59 

ligule, apparently white. Achens fulvous, scarcely longer 
than half a line. Pappus white. 

Amongst Indian species nearest to E. Wightii, otherwise 
resembling E. Philadelphicum and purpnreum. 

Ozothamnus decurrens. 

(Sect, jjuozothamnus.) 

Leaves linear, short, spreading, truncate, with entirely revo- 
lute margin, in a double line decurrent, wrinkled, rough, 
shining; corymbs compound, terminal; flower-heads 
ovate-cylindrical, at last bell-shaped, yellowish-white, 
homogamous, with about 11 flowers; scales of the invo- 
lucre blunt, with sbghtly tomentose back and hyaline 
margins ; achenes scabrous-papillose ; bristles of the 
pappus 21-25, a little thickened at the apex. 

In the desert scrubs on the Murray and Darling rivers, 
and near Lake Alexandrina. 

Branchlets angular and green, on account of the decurrent 
leaves. The latter generally only from 2-4 lines, sometimes 
half an inch long, hardly 1 line broad ; the velvet of their 
lower page only visible in the midrib. Peduncles thinly 
tomentose. Flowerheads scarcely 3 lines long. 

It differs from Ozothamnus retusus in shorter, more 
wrinkled leaves, with broader decurrent lines, in neither 
shining, nor glabrous, nor heterogamous flowerheads, and in 
more copious pappus-bristles. 

Oz. adnatus, to which Dr. Sonder referred this plant doubt- 
fully in the Linnaea, 1852, p. 511, differs, according to D. 
Candolle's note of that species, in shorter and appressed 
leaves, and in ovate scarcely yellowish flowerheads, being 
besides not a desert plant. 


Bidaria erect a. 

Stems erect, shrubby; branches with appressed hair ; leaves 
linear, nearly sessile, glabrous or somewhat ciliate at the 
margin; umbels on very short peduncles, solitary or 
twin; flowers small; faux of the corolla bearded; stigma 
conical, longer than the stamens ; follicles nearly terete. 

On stony ridges along the Victoria River. 

A shrub several feet high. Leaves from 2 to 4 inches long, 
1-2 lines broad. Corollas nearly white. 

60 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

Bidaria leptophylla. 

Climbing; branchlets slender as well as the peduncles covered 
with velvet hair; leaves linear, slightly downy; pedun- 
cles as long as the umbel ; corolla small, urceolate ; its 
teeth blunt, three times shorter than the tube. 

At the sources of the Burdeken River. 

A milky plant, several feet high. Stems terete, sometimes 
rather silky. Leaves acute, opposite or, through imperfect 
development of the branchlets, fsesciculate, at last glabrous, 
1^-2 inches long, 1-2 lines broad, with flat margin. Umbels 
with several or many flowers, solitary or twin. Peduncles 
half an inch long or shorter. Pedicels longer than the linear- 
subulate unequal bracteoles. Calyx with fine appressed 
downs, scarcely longer than one line ; its lobes lanceolate, 
acute, appressed. Corolla 2^ lines long, outside glabrous ; 
tube ovate ; inside with a line of hair ; limb spreading only 
half a line long with orbicular- ovate blunt lobes. Anthers 
terminated in a white membrane. Stigma white conical. 


Vandellia clausa. 

(Sect. Bonnaya.) 

Glabrous ; stem simple, erect, producing leaves only at the 
base, sometimes with a pair of small bracts near the 
middle ; leaves broad-ovate, repand or denticulate, the 
lower ones the smallest ; racemes terminal, solitary or 
twin, with several or many flowers ; bracteoles solitary, 
or the lower ones opposite, lanceolate or linear subulate, 
several times shorter than the pedicels - the latter twice 
to four times as long as the calyx, and about as long or 
not much longer than the capsule ; calyx deeply five- 
cleft, with linear-subulate segments ; tube of the corolla 
nearly cylindrical, almost three times as long as the 
calyx; faux closed; sterile stamens totally adnate, form- 
ing two slightly prominent carinas ; anthers of the two 
fertile stamens one-celled, coherent; capsules linear- 
elliptical, rather acute, longer than the style ; seeds 
black, nearly ovate, angulate, transversely streaked. 

On sand-plains, subject to occasional inundations, on the 
Victoria River and its tributaries. 

Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 61 

An annual herb, generally less than one foot high. 
Largest leaves \ inch long. Bracts measuring in length 
about one line, broader than the bracteoles. Corolla purple, 
hardly half an inch long; the upper lip nearly semiorbicular, 
slightly emarginate, half as long as the lower one ; middle 
lobe of the latter round-cordate, lateral ones orbicidar-ovate. 
Sterile stamens white, enclosed. Anthers one-celled, but 
perhaps only by the confluence of divaricate lobes, but cer- 
tainly not so clearly two-celled as in Vandellia scapigera, 
which bears to V. clausa the greatest resemblance, still is 
furnished with 4 fertile stamens, as an examination of speci- 
mens collected at Macadam Range has proved; two of the 
filaments in Vandellia scapigera are furnished at the base 
with a short filiform glandulous appendage. Its corolla is 
white. The anthers are coherent in pairs. Lamels of the 
stigma sometimes unequal. Capsule 3-4 lines long, about 
three times longer than the calyx. 

Vandellia lobelioides. 

(Sect. Boimaya.) 

Glabrous; stem simple, erect, provided with leaves only at 
the base, but towards the middle with one or two distant 
pair of bracts ; leaves broad-ovate, repand or quite 
entire, the lowest the smallest ; racemes few-flowered, 
the terminal one solitary, in addition to which some- 
times a lateral one, shortened to a corymb and occa- 
sionally reduced to a single flower ; bracteoles all oppo- 
site, linear-subulate, many times shorter than the 
pedicels; the latter four to six times longer than the 
calyx ; tube of the coralla upwards widened, twice as 
long as the calyx ; sterile stamens totally adnate, form- 
ing two very prominent carinas ; faux open ; fertile 
stamens with coherent one-celled anthers; capsule ovate, 
shorter than the style ; seeds brown-yellow, angular, 
transversely wrinkled. 
A companion of Vandellia clausa, to which it stands in 
close affinity. 

An annual herb, with the habit of a Lobelia, from a finger 
to a span long. Bracts narrow-lanceolate, l-\\ line long, 
never missing, broader than the bracteoles. Segments of the 
calyx linear-subulate. Corolla nearly half an inch long, blue, 
rarely pink or white ; its upper-lip semiovate, with two short 
and acute teeth, or emarginate, plicate, often whitish, three 

62 Some hitherto unknown Australian Plants. 

times shorter than the lower one ; lateral lobes of the lower- 
lip round-ovate, middle one round kidney-shaped, near the 
faux with a white spot. Sterile stamens white, like those of 
V. clausa without anthers ; their apex exserted, yellow and 
bent outward into a very short lobe. Lamels of the stigma 
equal. Capsule about 2 lines long. 

Vandellia plantaginea. 

(Sect. Bonnaya.) 

Leaves all radical, glabrous, narrow- or spathulate- or ovate- 
lanceolate, slightly repand or entire; scape rather long, 
furrowed, with prominent angles, bractless/ or about the 
middle with a solitary pair of bracts; raceme short, 
terminal dense, almost forming a spike, glandulous- 
downy ; bracteoles longer than the pedicles ; the latter 
shorter than the calyx; capsule ovate, acute, of the 
length of the calyx, shorter than the style. 
In moist meadows near Macadam Range. 
The root short, thick, and fibrinous, possibly perennial. 
Scape one foot or less high. Leaves \-2\ inches long, gene- 
rally short-stalked. Raceme measuring \-2\ inches. Corolla 
blue. Capsule about 2 lines long. 

This species is extremely rare, and the only flowering spe- 
cimen which was found is deposited in Sir Wm. Hooker's 
herbarium, at Kew. It may possibly not be a congener, in 
the strictest sense of the two preceding ones. In the bota- 
nical collections of the North Australian Expedition, I 
referred all three to Bonnaya, combining at the occasion with 
it the genus Ilysanthes. I proceed now a step further, and 
unite these plants and all the species of Lindernia, Ilysanthes, 
and Bonnaya to Vandellia, because on the same grounds as 
those which led to the separation of the above genera, others 
also of this order (for instance, Gratiola) ought then to be 

Mimulus debilis. 

Annual, glabrous ; stem slender, decumbent, quadrangular; 

leaves small, distant, lanceolate-linear, entire, somewhat 

scabrous, gradually pointed; pedicels thin-filiform, four 

or many times longer than the calyx; flowers yellow. 

In humid meadows and around swamps at Macadam Range, 

Providence Hill, and the M 'Arthur River. 

Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda, fyc. 63 

A flaccid herb, about a span long. Leaves 3-4 lines long. 
Pedicels measuring between one and two inches, the corolla 
about half an inch. 


Utricularia fulva. 
Vesicles and radical leaves wanting; stem simple, erect, with 
distant bractlike-scales; racemes with remote flowers, 
flexuose; bracts almost cordate; bracteoles setaceous; 
sepals round, acuminate, longer than the pedicels; upper 
lip of the corolla bluntly bi-lobed, lower one indistinct 
three-lobed ; palate bearded ; spur horizontal, subulate, 
not compressed, capsule globose. 
Around stagnant water near Macadam Range ; rare. 
An herb, from a span to a foot high. Corolla fulvous, 
except the palate, which is yellow and dotted with red spots. 
The U. chrysantha, which occurs in grassy flats on the 
Victoria River, is a much taller plant, with bright yellow 
flowers, and a differently shaped lower lip. 

Art. IX. — Mr. J. T. Gellibrand's Memoranda of a Trip to 
Port Phillip in 1836. Addressed to His Excellency the 
Lieutenant-Governor. From a MS. Copy presented to 
the Philosophical Institute of Victoria by the Hon. Capt. 
Clarke, R.E.* 

[Bead before the Institute, 8th September,' 1858.] 

Campbell Street, April 18th, 1836. 

Sir — I have much pleasure in transmitting to your Excel- 
lency, conformably with my promise, a transcript of the me- 
moranda of my late trip to Port Phillip 

document that it was only intended for the information of 
the parties immediately interested, and was not intended as 
an. official document, but your Excellency is at perfect liberty 
to make such use of it as you may consider the public inte- 
rests of the aborigines may require. 

* The MS. was unfortunately injured by a fire at the printers. Portions 
which were quite illegible are left blank ; doubtful words are marked with 
a ?— J. M., Ed. 

64 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

There are some passages of a personal nature, which I 
might have omitted; but I have refrained from doing so, as the 
document would then have been only an extract, and not a 

Having thus the opportunity of drawing your Excellency's 
attention to many of the circumstances connected with the 
settlement at Port Phillip, I cannot refrain pressing upon 
your Excellency's consideration the extreme importance of at 
once combining with the first rays of civilization the ines- 
timable advantages of religious instruction. The intercourse 
with the aborigines has hitherto been conducted upon a 
friendly footing, and they have evinced, as far as I have been 
enabled to judge, those traits of character which are calcu- 
lated to realise the prospect of their imbibing the best feel- 
ings towards the whites ; and looking to the progress which 
has been made within the last few months, and the friendly 
feeling which is maintained with all the tribes, I am firmly 
impressed with the opinion that the foundation may be laid 
at Port Phillip for spreading the truths of Christianity through 
the whole continent of New Holland, and I am happy to 
know that I am not singular in this opinion ; for Mr. Reed, 
of Launceston, who has recently visited Port Phillip, went 
alone and unarmed with a large body of natives up the 
country, and was with them several days and nights; his inter- 
course with the natives was highly gratifying to him, and 
when he left them, the women and children parted from him 
with tears. I have received a letter from Mr. Reed, offering 
a donation of .£20 towards building a mission-house and 
school-rooms, and an annual donation of a like sum for the 
support of a missionary ; and I know several gentlemen who 
are prepared to contribute to the same extent, and I hope in 
the course of a few days to lay before you a plan for the per- 
manent establishment of one, if not two missionaries at this 
interesting and important colony. 

I have the honor to be, &c, &c, 

(Signed) J. T. Gellibrand. 


Sunday, Jan. 17. — I embarked this morning, with my son 
Tom, on board the " Norval," for Port Phillip, in company 
with Mr. Wm. Robertson, Mr. Gardiner, Mr. Leake, Mr. 
Malcolm, and Mr Mudie (the latter gentleman having the 

a Trip to Port Phillip, 65 

management of the sheep on board, the property of Captain 
Swanston). After making Point Grant, we encountered a 
severe gale of wind from N.W., and the vessel lay to for 
three nights and two days, under close reefed topsails. The 
vessel drifted about 70 or 80 miles to the S.E., and on Sun- 
day morning (Jan. 24) at daylight the ship was again off 
Point Grant, and beating up to the westward of Cape Schank, 
and distant about 20 miles. 

In consequence of the improper manner in which the vessel 
was fitted up for the stock, about 115 sheep perished by in- 
juries and suffocation during the gale and the day afterwards. 
The greater portion of the hay had been destroyed, in conse- 
quence of there not being any proper racks, and on Saturday, 
the 23rd, the passengers were under the necessity of assisting 
Mr. Mudie in feeding the sheep with flour and water. The 
captain stated that he should not be able to make Port Phillip 
without two or three tacks ; and even if he succeeded in get- 
ting into Port Phillip that evening, it would most probably 
take him two days to reach the settlement. He also stated 
that the ship was under demurrage, at .€10 per day, and 
would be so until she came to anchor at Western Port, where 
she was engaged to take in a cargo of bark for the owner. 
Under these circumstances, and feeling coi"ndnced that if a 
change of wind took place, and the vessel was again driven 
from the land, the sheep must perish, and there not being 
any means of even keeping them alive for three days, and 
believing that the sheep could be landed at Sandy Point that 
day, the passengers were unanimously of opinion that it 
would be for the interest of the charterers to proceed at once 
to Western Port, land the stock, and drive the sheep across 
to the settlement at Port Phillip. The captain then, at the re- 
quest of Mr. Mudie, made Western Port, and about twelve 
o' clock the vessel came to anchor near Sandy Point. About 
one, the captain, Mr. Mudie, Mr. Eobertson, Mr. Gardiner, 
Mr. Leake, and my son proceeded to the shore, for the pur- 
pose of selecting a proper place to land the sheep. I remained 
on board for the purpose of getting the long boat out, and 
the sheep ready for disembarkation. In about three hours 
the boat returned, and the parties stated that it was impossi- 
ble to land sheep, as there was nothing but heath and scrub, 
and no appearance of water. A person of the name of Thorn 
was on board the vessel, for the purpose of acting as pilot at 
Western Port, and superintending the shipment of the bark, 
who was well acquainted with Western Port. He repre- 

66 Mr. Gellibrund's Memoranda of 

sented that there was a heautiful tract of land and plenty of 
•water about ten miles further up the bay, and near the govern- 
ment settlement, which had been abandoned in 1827. After 
some deliberation and hesitation on the part of the captain, 
it was determined that a party should proceed at daylight to 
Phillip Island, to examine that station, and if we could not 
find good land and water, to proceed at once to the spot 
pointed out by Mr. Thorn. 

Jan. 25. — Went on shore at daylight, with Mr. Mal- 
colm, Mr. Robertson, and Mr. Mudie, to Phillip Island, and 
returned in about an hour, finding Phillip Island totally unfit 
for the purpose required. Got the vessel immediately under 
weigh, and proceeded to the spot pointed out by Mr. Thorn, 
and came to anchor within a quarter of a mile from shore, 
about nine o'clock in the morning. The long and other boats 
were immediately loaded with sheep, and Mr. Mudie, Mr. 
Gardiner, Mr. Leake, Mr. Malcolm, Tom, and myself, and 
two shepherds went ashore with the first boat. Mr. Robert- 
son staid on board for the purpose of superintending the 
sheep, and it was arranged that Mr. Mudie and the shepherds 
should wait on the beach and receive them, and that the 
others should examine the tract of land, and decide upon the 
most eligible spot as a temporary settlement. When the 
sheep were landed they endeavoured to drink salt water, and 
were inclined to wander (as sheep always do in a strange 
place) . They were landed upon a point of land with abund- 
ance of grass, and 300 acres of land might be enclosed by a 
line of 150 yards. 

When I landed I particularly cautioned the shepherds not 
to let the sheep stray, and to keep them from the salt water. 
We then proceeded to examine the land, and found abund- 
ance of grass, and in some places it was six feet high, but we 
did not find any water. In passing through one of the valleys 
I found the gleams of heat extremely oppressive, and which 
brought on violent palpitation and a determination of blood 
to the head. We were then distant about three miles from 
the vessel. I walked back, supported by Mr. Gardiner and 
Mr. Leake, about one mile, but was unable to proceed any 
further. I then lay down under a tree, Tom and Mr. Leake 
remaining with me, and Mr. Gardiner and Mr. Malcolm pro- 
ceeded to the vessel to procure assistance. They returned in 
two hours with a boat, and I reached the vessel about three 
o'clock, and found all the sheep, amounting to one thousand 
and nine had been landed. In the evening, Mr. Robertson, 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 67 

Mr. Leake, and Mr. Gardiner went ashore and found the 
shepherds near the point, and that the sheep had strayed 
away. They went in search of them, and brought back to the 
Point about 800, which they placed in charge of the three 
shepherds who were then on shore. 

Tuesday, Jan. 26. — Mr. Robertson and the other gentle- 
men went on shore at daylight, and found that the shepherds, 
instead of being stationed back in the bush, so as to keep the 
sheep on the neck, had in fact wholly neglected their duty, 
and had slept at the extreme point on the beach close to the 
vessel ; and on searching for the sheep, only two or three, 
which were in a dying state, could be found. The gentlemen 
then proceeded in search of the sheep, and returned about 
eleven o'clock to the ship to breakfast, having walked about 
15 miles in a fruitless search after the sheep. Mr. Robertson 
having found, from Mr. Thorn, that there was a fine river, 
about nine miles from the Point, was extremely anxious to 
proceed, in search of the sheep, as far as the river, under the 
expectation of finding them, and Mr. Thorn promised to 
meet him in the evening, with the long boat, near the mouth 
of the river. Mr. Robertson, Mr. Leake, and Mr. Mudie 
again left the vessel about twelve o'clock, to proceed as far as 
the river. The captain and my son left the vessel about the 
same time, and proceeded along the beach on the other side 
of the Point, and as far as the late settlement. The captain 
and Tom found the tracks of sheep along the beach, and about 
two miles from the landing place, a muddy, salt water creek, 
and the carcases of about two hundred and eighty sheep in 
and near the creek. Mr. Robertson and the others reached 
the vessel about eleven o'clock at night ; they had been un- 
successful in their search — they were worn out with fatigue 
and anxiety. Mr. Mudie went into violent hysterics. Mr. 
Robertson and Mr. Leake were both taken exceedingly ill, 
and, in fact, nature appeared quite exhausted. 

Wednesday , Jan. 27. — We this morning took into consi- 
deration our own situation, and what course should be pur- 
sued. Having suffered from the heat on Monday, I did not 
think it proper to expose myself to the dangers of a journey 
overland, and I intimated my intention of staying on board 
until a better opportunity of proceeding, either backwards or 
forwards, presented itself; but finding that one or two of the 
gentlemen would follow my example, and that the others 
would proceed overland to Port Phillip, and thinking that 
three or four might be exposed to dangers which eight might 

f 2 

68 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

prevent, and knowing also the anxiety I should feel in the 
uncertainty of their fate, I at length determined that we should 
all proceed by the first opportunity to Port Phillip. We were 
all anxious, however, before we quitted the vessel, to conclude 
some arrangement for the establishment of Mr. Mudie, until 
we could send him assistance from Port Phillip ; and as the 
late government station appeared the most eligible for that 
purpose, on account of its situation and supply of water, we 
proceeded this morning, in the whale-boat, to that station, 
and made arrangements which appeared satisfactory to Mr. 
Mudie, who then determined to remove all his stores, and 
also the wives of the shepherds out of the vessel, and fix his 
station there, so that we might direct a party where to find 
him. On my return to the ship, the party were all busily 
engaged in making arrangements for the proposed journey, 
and I was busily employed in making calomel pills, in case 
any of the party should be taken ill. This day was extremely 
sultry, and we were waiting some hours in anxious expectation 
of the sea-breeze, as we were desirous of reaching Sandy 
Point that night; so that we might start upon our journey by 
daylight. About five o' clock a slight breeze set in, and we 
bid farewell to the " Norval," each person taking one bottle 
of water, and trusting to Providence for such further supplies 
as we might require in our passage to Sandy Point. Mr. 
Gardiner shot a swan, and Tom another. We were unable 
to reach Sandy Point before dark, and about three-quarters 
of a mile from our landing-place, the boat grounded on a 
sand-bank with a rapid ebbing tide, and we remained aground, 
high and dry, all night. At daylight the tide was flowing, 
and in an hour and a half the vessel was afloat, and about six 
o'clock we landed and saw many tracks of the natives upon 
the beach. We made a fire and roasted the swans for break- 
fast, which proved very acceptable; and after having remu- 
nerated Mr. Thorn for his trouble, and obtained from him 
a promise to return to the same spot on the following Sunday, 
in case we should be unable to accomplish our purpose, Mr. 
Thorn took his departure in the boat, and we commenced our 
journey. The party was eight in number ; all carried arms 
except myself, and all knapsacks, except Tom and myself. 
Mr. Robertson most kindly carried the greater portion of my 
provisions, and Mr. Leake the blankets, and the remainder 
was carried by my shepherd. Mr. Gardiner was chosen 
conductor, and in case of any appearance of the natives, the 
gentlemen were all pledged to act under my directions. We 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 69 

pursued a course N.W., and we found the country, for the 
first three miles, heath and low scrub. We then got into a 
thin forest, and after we had walked about nine miles, I felt 
the same effects from the heat that I had experienced the 
previous Monday, and, in consequence, the party halted in 
the forest. I lay down for about two hours, and finding the 
heat very oppressive, I took three grains of calomel, and in 
half an hour afterwards took another pill. "Whilst we were 
in the forest, Mr. Leake had exhausted his supply of water, 
and at this time he was determined to leave us in search of 
water, and accordingly Mr. Leake and one of the men left us 
and were absent upwards of an hour. We became much 
alarmed at their absence, but at length we heard a cooey, and 
they returned with the intelligence that they had fallen in 
with about one hundred native huts, and near the huts had 
discovered water. We then packed up our things and pro- 
ceeded on our course, and in about a quarter of an hour came 
to a few waterholes, surrounded by a thick scrub. The party 
dined at this place, and although it was extremely hot, we 
remained there till five o' clock, under the shelter of a blanket 
tent to protect us from the rays of the sun. Having filled all 
our bottles with water, we then proceeded on our journey, 
and supposing the distance across to the Bay of Port Phillip to 
be only a few miles, we were induced to hope we should 
reach the bay that night. Several times we fancied we could 
discern the sea, and so kept on walking till ten o'clock at 
night when we got into a piece of open scrub, and thinking it 
safer to lay down in an open place, we determined to stay 
there that night, and those who had blankets spread them 
out and lay down to rest, affording part to those who bad 
none. We were too tired either to make a fire or eat. We 
rose at daylight and proceeded on our journey without any 
breakfast, under the hope of making the bay. We came to 
two or three very scrubby places, but without water, and at 
this time I do not think there was a bottle of water amongst 
the whole party. One or two of the gentlemen were of opi- 
nion that we were making too much north, which prevented 
us from reaching the bay, and as that seemed to be the object 
of our desire, our course was altered a point or two more west, 
and about eight o'clock in the morning we came upon a salt 
water creek, which led to Port Phillip Bay. We found a fira 
burning at two native huts, and every appearance of their 
having been occupied the previous night. On the beach 
we found tracks of natives proceeding towards Arthur's 

70 Mr. Gettibrand's Memoranda of 

Seat. We rested here and made a fire. Some of the party- 
proceeded in search of water, which, however, was very 
Brackish. We had our breakfast and consumed what little 
water was left — two bottles of the brackish water was boiled 
with tea, in the event of not finding better water. 

After resting at this place about half an hour, we proceeded 
on our journey about five miles, and then discovered several 
native huts, and, to our great joy and gratitude, found a creek 
with an abundant supply of water. We rested at this place 
about two hours, filled our bottles, and proceeded on our 
journey about six miles, and came to some more waterholes 
and native huts. We dined at this spot, took a fresh supply 
of water, and proceeded on our journey, and came to an open, 
sandy bay, about thirty or forty miles long. We continued 
walking until about six o'clock, when the weather became 
squally and wet. We walked for about half an hour, and had 
intended to do so until late at night, but the rain increasing, 
we thought it most prudent to get some shelter before it was 
dark. We then went into the scrub and found a sheltered 
spot. We made a blanket hut to protect us from the rain, 
with a large fire in front. We soon found a large quantity 
of blue ants on the ground which we had selected for our 
resting place, and I therefore, as it was too late to move our 
tent, spread the ashes all over the ground, which had the 
effect of driving them away. It continued raining till about 
two o'clock, but as we were lying on a sand bank the rain 
was all absorbed. 

Jan. 30. — We started this morning about half an hour be- 
fore daylight, and continued walking till eight o'clock, with- 
out finding any fresh water. We then rested, and had our 
breakfast and about half a pint of tea to each person, which 
was all the water we had left, and we then continued our 
journey, expecting at every turn of the bay that we should 
discover the river. We continued walking till twelve 
o'clock, when Mr. Leake and Tom laid down, declaring they 
could not proceed any further till they got water. We had 
now quitted the shore and got upon high land again. After 
resting on the hill about half an hour, I urged upon the 
party to proceed, and after some difficulty we were all upon 
the march, but some of the party were a considerable distance 
behind. We were now upon a native track, and the advan- 
tage of following those tracks was soon experienced. The track 
continued along the margin of the hill, and ultimately led us 
to the beach, and near the beach we found a few native huts 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 71 

and one native well. Upon discovering the well, Mr. Gardi- 
ner gave the welcome shout, " Water," which was immedi- 
ately repeated by the others, and in a few minutes the Aveary 
ones in arrear came rushing down, anxious to quench their 
thirst ; but by the time they had reached the well, Mr. Gar- 
diner reported the water to be bad. 

Mr. Robertson, however, examined the well, and thinking 
it had been choked up, he got an oyster shell and cleaned it 
out and deepened it, expecting that the fresh water would be 
good. The party were now obliged to wait with much anxiety, 
watching the rising of the water in the hole, and at length 
Mr. Robertson was enabled to distribute to each person half 
a pint, and in about an hour a second supply of a pint 
each was distributed for dinner, and we were enabled when 
we quitted, at four o' clock, to take with us three bottles of 
water. At four we continued our course along the beach, 
Mr. Gardiner and myself making the first start, and in about 
ten minutes we saw a dog on the beach, advancing towards 
us. At length he stopped and then ran back again and turned 
into the bush, from which we concluded that the natives were 
at hand. We waited till some of the party came up, and then 
advanced and found on the beach part of a Boomah kangaroo, 
and we saw the tracks of several natives on the beach, and 
several tracks of dogs. We fully expected this night to reach 
the settlement, and we pushed on until seven o'clock; we then 
came to a point which we fully expected would be the head of 
the river. We crossed over the point and found a stack of 
wattle bark, and we also found the hut where the barkers had 
lived, and the tracks of a cart. It had been raining about 
three quarters of an hour, and we were nearly wet through. 
We felt assured that we were near the settlement, and that 
the bark had been obtained by Mr. Fawkner's party, but we 
could not see the river. It was near night, and every appear- 
ance of a wet one, and we therefore considered it most pru- 
dent at once to make a blanket hut for the night, and make a 
fire before the bark and grass were too wet, and which we 
accordingly did. Two of the party went in search of 
waterholes, but without success, and Tom went to the beach 
to shoot a duck, and in about ten minutes he returned, hav- 
ing found waterholes near the beach, and where we again 
obtained an abundant supply of good water. This night 
was very wet and the most uncomfortable one we had 

Jan. 31. — Although we were satisfied that we were near 

72 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

the settlement, we considered it most prudent to keep the 
bay until Ave reached the river, and after walking about seven 
miles further, we at length discovered the mouth of the river. 
My feet had been for the last two days very much blistered, 
and I felt quite unable to walk any further, and I therefore 
proposed that half the party should proceed to the settlement 
and send a boat or a horse to my assistance ; and Mr. Gardi- 
ner, Mr. Leake, Mr. Malcolm, and Tom proceeded to the 
settlement. I hobbled along, with the assistance of Mr. Ro- 
bertson, about three miles, and then waited, -for the horse or 
boat. In about half an hour a boat, manned with blacks, 
came down the river. We hailed them, and after ascertaining 
where we had come from and who we were, they came to our 
assistance. We found they were going to the Heads to fish, 
but they immediately proceeded with us to the settlement, 
and we arrived at the settlement about twelve o' clock. 

The settlement consists of about a dozen huts, built with 
turf, on the left bank of the river Yarra-Yarra. The river, 
from the mouth to the settlement, is about eight miles long ; 
it is salt for about six. For the first two miles it is about 500 
yards wide, for the next three miles it is about 300 yards, it 
then becomes gradually narrower, and is about 60 yards 
wide at the settlement, with deep and precipitous banks, and 
vessels of sixty tons burthen can with safety proceed to the 
settlement, close to the shore, and discharge a cargo. As it 
was of importance that immediate assistance should be ren- 
dered to Mr. Mudie, I made arrangements with Mr. Batman 
to despatch, on the next morning, four Sydney natives, who 
it appears were well acquainted with Western Port, and who 
upon questioning them, appeared to be quite confident that 
they would be able to find the sheep and bring them to Port 

I felt very much vexed in learning that the natives, with 
the exception of two, had left the settlement on a hunting 
expedition, a few days previous, and would not return for 
some time. 

Feb. 1. — I had this morning a long conversation with 
Buckley, and explained to him very fully the desire of the 
association in every respect to meet his views, and to make 
him superintendent over the native tribes, for the purpose of 
protecting them from aggressions, and also acting as an in- 
terpreter in imparting to them not only the habits of civili- 
zation, but also of communicating religious knowledge. It 
appears, from his statement, that the tribes are most peace- 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 73 

ably disposed, that they fully understand the nature of the 
grants issued by them, and that they are looking forward to 
the time when the blankets, tomahawks, and flour will be 

Buckley appears to be of a nervous and irritable disposition, 
and that a little thing will annoy him much ; but this may 
arise from the peculiar situation in which he has been placed 
for so many years. I am quite satisfied that he can only be 
acted upon by kindness and conciliation, and that by those 
means he will be an instrument, in the hands of Providence, 
in working a great moral change upon the aborigines. He is 
not at all desirous of occupying any land or having sheep, 
but is highly pleased at the idea of being appointed superin- 
tendent of the natives, with a fixed stipend, so that, to use 
his own expression, "he may know what he has to depend upon, 
and be enabled to make a few presents to his native friends." 
I told him that I intended, on the following day, to proceed 
to Geelong, and inquired whether he would like to visit his 
own country. He seemed much pleased at the idea, but 
stated lie did not think he could walk so far. I then proposed 
he should ride, which seemed to gratify him very much, and, 
in consequence, I engaged a large cart-horse of Mr. Fawk- 
ner's for that purpose. 

My feet were so bad I could not walk, and as I was desirous 
of seeing No, 12, I had my horse taken to the fording place 
and round to the salt-water creek, and about ten o' clock Mr. 
Gardiner, Mr. Robertson, Dr. Cotter, myself, and Linfield 
went in the whale-boat to the creek. I took Linfield with me 
for the purpose of making him acquainted with that section, 
as I intended to stock it. After passing over about six miles 
of the section, we came upon a large salt water river, which 
Dr. Cotter was of opinion communicated with a chain of fresh 
water ponds, which he had recently crossed on that section. 
Dr. Cotter and myself therefore proceeded to trace up the 
river, and I requested the remainder of the party to trace it 
down to the sea. Dr. Cotter and myself then traced the 
river up to the chain of ponds, and I was quite satisfied there 
was plenty of water on the grant. We then made across to 
the point at which the ships lay, and the stock was landed, 
and we found all the party with the exception of Linfield, 
who it appeared had stayed behind. Yv r e waited for him about 
three quarters of an hour, and as it was six in the evening, 
the gentlemen were anxious to return, and I therefore desired 
the man to take the horse round the point, find Linfield, and 

74' Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

bring him home by the fording place. About ten o'olock at 
night the man returned home with the horse, and stated that 
he could not find Linfield anywhere, and as I felt very uneasy 
about him, I desired Mr. Batman to send the boat at daylight 
the next morning in search of him. 

Feb. 2. — The boat returned this morning about seven 
o'clock with Linfield, who, finding he had lost us, proceeded 
to the Salt Water Creek, where he had been landed, and 
being, as I imagine, very much afraid of the natives, sat up in 
a tree all night, and seeing the boat come down the river he 
cooeyed to them. 

Mr. Fawkner's vessel arrived this morning from George- 
town, and I considered it advisable to send assistance to Mr. 
Mudie in the removal of the women, stores, and rams from 
Western Port, and I therefore engaged the vessel for one trip 
upon Captain Swanston's account. In consequence of Mr. 
Fawkner's people being engaged with the vessel, we were 
unable to obtain the horses for our journey until about four 
o'clock in the afternoon, when we started (seven in number), 
intending to reach Captain Swanston's station, on the River 
Exe, that night. The journey from the settlement to the 
ford on the Saltwater River is most beautiful, and some of 
the spots quite enchanting ; the grass had been burnt about a 
month previously and it was then quite green and beautiful. 
The land is very rich, and consists of a succession of gentle 
hills and dales, and the first view of the Saltwater River and 
its windings is beautiful beyond description. We reached the 
ford about half-past six, and found the country quite changed. 
When we crossed the ford the land was quite flat and rather 
rocky, and from the ford to the station on the Exe, a distance 
of fourteen miles, and in fact up to Geelong harbour, consisted 
of open plains with a thin coating of grass, and exposed to 
the cold winds. We did not reach the station till half-past 
ten at night, and were compelled for the last seven miles to 
follow a cart-track, which we were fortunately enabled to do 
as it was a starlight night. 

Feb. 3. — As Mr. Furgesson had not found the sheep, and we 
were proceeding in the direction where they had been lost, 
he proposed to accompany us in our visit to Geelong, and we 
started this morning about seven o'clock. 

At noon we came upon a chain of ponds which appeared to 
come from the Debackarite, and which I accordingly noted 
in my chart. We halted at this chain of ponds and dined, and 
towards evening we came upon some native wells near the 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 75 

point of Geelong harbour, which we called Geewar, and as 
there was good feed for the horses, we determined on staying 
here for the night. 

Feb. 4. — We started from Geewar about six o'clock, and 
shortly afterwards entered the section No. 16, which we found 
to contain a tract of most excellent land, fit for agricultural or 
pastoral purposes. After travelling about fourteen miles we 
came to some more native wells, on the margin of the bay 
and close to the line which divides 16 from 17. We stayed at 
this place and dined, and then proceeded across the Bellerine 
Hills to the settlement of Indented Head. The Bellerine 
Hills contain about twenty thousand acres of land of the finest 
description. They consist of hill and dale, and although we 
did not see any water in the valleys, I am satisfied water 
could be easily obtained. The land is thinly timbered, the 
soil appeared very rich and fit for any purpose; the kangaroo 
grass was up to my middle, and with a thick bottom. It is as 
fine a tract of land as any I have yet passed over. 

We reached the settlement about four o'clock, and I 
learned to my extreme mortification that some of the natives 
had that morning, and the others the day previously, quitted 
the settlement, in consequence of the threats made use of by 
the man at the station that he would shoot the natives. I 
found that the natives had a few nights previously stolen 
about a sack of potatoes out of the garden. They had pulled 
up the roots and taken the potatoes, and then planted the 
roots in the earth again, thinking they should not be dis- 
covered, and to prevent a repetition of this conduct, the 
threats had been made use of without the slightest intention 
of carrying them into execution. I find that although there 
are abundance of fish at Indented Head, yet that there are 
no means of catching them, and that the natives have no idea 
of making small boats or catamarans. 

Feb. 5. — We started very early this morning under the 
expectation that we should see the natives, and in order that 
they should not be frightened, I directed Buckley to advance, 
and we would follow him at the distance of a quarter of a 
mile. Buckley made towards a native well, and after he had 
ridden about eight miles we heard a cooey, and when we ar- 
rived at the spot I witnessed one of the most pleasing and 
affecting sights. There were three men, five women, and 
about twelve children. Buckley had dismounted, and they 
were all clinging round him, and tears of joy and delight run- 
ning down their cheeks. It was truly an affecting sight, and 

76 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

proved the affection which this people entertained for Buckley. 
I felt much affected at the sight myself, and considered it a 
convincing proof of the happy results which will follow our 
exertions, if properly directed. 

Amongst the number were a little old man and an old 
woman, one of his wives. Buckley told me this was his old 
friend, and with whom he had lived and associated thirty 
years. I was surprised to find this old man had not a blanket, 
and I inquired the cause, and was much concerned to learn 
that no blanket had been given him because he did not leave 
that part of the country and proceed to Doutigalla for it. I 
could ill spare my blankets for him, but I could not refrain 
from giving one of them to Buckley in order that he might 
give it to his friend, with an assurance that he should have 
further clothing after our return. The men seemed much 
surprised at the horses. I, however, after some little persua- 
sion, induced the youngest man to put his foot in the stirrup 
and mount my grey mare, and I led the horse round a feAV 
paces, to the great delight of the whole party. I then coaxed 
the mare, put my face to her's, to show them they need 
not be afraid, and then prevailed upon a young girl about 
thirteen years of age, also, to have a ride. As soon as the 
hcrse began to move she seemed very much alarmed, and her 
countenance bespoke her fears, but she continued silent. We 
gave them a few presents, and then left them to proceed on 
our journey. I may here mention that so soon as Buckley 
crossed the Saltwater Biver, and obtained a view of his own 
country, his countenance was much changed, and when we 
reached Geelong he took the lead and kept us upon a trot. 
He seemed quite delighted and proud of his hcrse. When we 
quitted the natives we directed our course to the head of the 
Barwon Biver. This river is about two miles wide. There 
are breakers on each side and the Heads like Port Phillip, and 
it appeared to me that there was a channel in the centre. We 
then proceeded through a fair country near the margin of the 
river, until we arrived at a flat where the river is at least eight 
or nine miles wide. At this flat there are some very good 
native wells called Yan-Yan. We dined at this place, and con- 
tinued our course near the river until we had crossed over a 
very extensive marsh on the banks of the Barwon, the ex- 
tremity of No. 16. We stopped at this place all night, shot 
some wild fowl, which we had for supper. Tom shot a large 
musk duck, which Buckley had for his supper. 

Feb. 6. — We started this morning about seven o'clock (?) 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 77 

and when we had reached the marsh we saw Greelong harbour, 
and ascertained the distance of the harbour at the neck was 
not more than four miles. We continued our course upon 
some high land until we reached the junction of the 
Yallack and Barwon rivers. We then descended into a 
marsh on the Yallack, left our horses there, crossed the Yal- 
lack by a native track, over a large tree, and went across the 
Barwon, to a spot called Buckley's Falls. We found a large 
basin, and the river somewhat resembles the cataract and 
basin at Launceston, but upon a smaller scale. Buckley 
showed us the hollow tree in which he used to live, and the 
places where they used to catch the fish in the winter season. 
Mr. Gardiner, Mr. Leake, Mr. Robertson, myself, and Mr. 
Malcolm crossed over the cataract for the purpose of examin- 
ing the Barabooi Hills, which had presented a most inviting 
appearance. In our progress up the Barwon River, we passed 
over about eight or nine miles, and we kept upon the high 
ground, in order that we might see the surrounding country. 
We found the herbage to be very good, and I think the best 
sheep country we had passed over, and I believe the other 
gentlemen were of the same opinion. We were compelled to 
recross the Barwon at the same (place?) and I should think, 
from the appearance of the country, that the Barwon is a 
deep river, about 60 feet wide for many miles up. In the 
winter a large body of water passes down it. We then crossed 
the Yallack, and dined, and proceeded about twelve miles fur- 
ther up the river, for the purpose of inspecting the country 
and searching for tracks of sheep, but without success. We 
stayed in a small marsh on the banks of the Yallock that 
night. The Yallock at this part is only a small running 
stream. Having a few spare potatoes, we planted them in the 
marsh near the fire. 

Feb. 7. — As soon as we made the rising ground this morn- 
ing we took an observation of the Villamanata and Annikie 
Hills, and found that they were not correctly laid down. 
We then proceeded direct for the Annikie Hills. We passed 
over a tract of very fine land. We found some water-holes 
at the foot of the Annikie, and the herbage for miles around, 
and even up to the top of the Annikie, is of the finest descrip- 
tion. We reached the summit of the highest hill, from which 
we had a beautiful view of the land extending up towards the 
Exe, which appeared to be very fine and well-timbered, also 
of the Barabooi Hills and of the land in and about Geelong. 
We descended upon the north side, passed a long flat ground 

78 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

between the Annakie and Villamanata Hills, left them 
about four miles on the right, and then came upon the De- 
backarite, which enabled me to continue the chain of ponds, 
and where we dined, and after dinner we rode across to 
Captain Swanston's station, which we reached at sundown. 

Feb. 8. — We passed this morning over to the upper part of 
No. 12, in order to continue the chain of ponds which we 
traced up to and over No. 11. We dined at the stock hut at 
the ford. After dinner, passed over five miles along the side 
line of No. 9, and then made an angle across to the settle- 
ment, which we reached about four in the afternoon, and 
found that the vessel had arrived during our absence. 

Some of the natives came to me and reported in the 
evening (?) that a ship was coming in. They made us under- 
stand that they had tracked us on the beach, and followed us 
many miles, and they had also seen the places were we had 

Feb. 9. — At daylight this morning we heard the re- 
port of guns from the ship, and shortly afterwards the natives 
reported that a vessel was at anchor with three masts; and 
concluding that it was the " Caledonia," Mr. Furgesson went 
down the river with Mr. Batman's boat. About eleven 
o'clock, Captain Symers, of the "Caledonia," came up to the 
settlement. I then arranged with him for a passage to 
Georgetown, to be on board on Saturday afternoon ; and 
at — o'clock, Mr. Furgesson, Mr. Stewart, Mr. Robertson, 
and I, with some of the native blacks, left the settlement for 
the purpose of proceeding to the northward, and exploring 
that part of the country. We took with us four days' supplies, 
and only two guns. My object in taking Stewart was to 
prevent the possibility of any collision with the natives, and 
that he might act as an interpreter. We proceeded in a 
straight line through the lands reserved for the settlement, 
and over No. 9. In passing over No. 9, we crossed a chain 
of ponds extending a little to the N.W. ; when we had 
reached the extremity of No. 9, and were entering No. 7, it 
was nearly dark, when we observed a tier of sheep hills 

moved to the right, 

and passed over about four miles of very fine (land '(), and 
just at dusk came upon a chain of ponds, as we expected, 
where we stayed all night. 

Feb. 10. — We started this morning at daylight, bearing to 
the right and ascending the Sheep Hills, so that we might be 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 79 

enabled to obtain an extensive view to the north-east. We 
travelled in this direction about four miles, and from the 
summit of the hill we had an extensive view of the country, 
composing Nos. 3 and 4 and part of No. 8. The country 
appeared rather thickly wooded towards No. 4, and particu- 
larly so over No. 8, and we were enabled clearly to trace the 
course of the river Yarra-Yarra by the white fog rising from 
it. We then .... on until we came to the 
chain of ponds, which I had particularly traced through No. 
9, and the line of which I was then enabled to continue. 
This chain of ponds I considered to be within a mile of the 
side line between No. 7 and No. 6. 

The country and pasturage is here very fine, and presents 
a desirable spot for a homestead. As I intended to come 
back over No. 1 and No. 2, and within a few miles of this spot, 
I marked down on the chart two sugar-loaf hills. The weather 
was exceedingly hot this day and we rested under a blanket tent 
for several hours at the ponds. In the afternoon we proceeded 
in a direction across the plain. We then ascended 

a hill, and from the summit obtained one of the most beau- 
tiful views I ever saw, commanding a full view of the junction 
near the settlement, of the Bay, Geelong, Yillamanata, and 
the Barabool Hills. I think it must have been from this 
spot Mr. Hume had the first view of Port Phillip. After 
taking observations and the bearings of these several places 
on the chart, we continued our course over No. 6 until we 
reached the Salt Water River, or the river Arundel, as called 
by Mr. Hume. We found the land highly timbered and 
fully equal to our anticipations as to quality 

suited for an extensive sheep run. We continued our 
course on the high ground and near the river for about five 
miles, and then descended into a small marsh near Gam's 

We this morning crossed the Salt Water River, and took 
a westerly direction to the summit of a flat-topped hill, which 
Stewart stated was the hill from which Mr. Batman saw the 
native fires on his first visit, and which he called Mount 
. . amo . ? ; we then proceeded over a running stream which 
nearly No. 5. 

We were detained . 

■, ■ • I told him that as we were 

limited to time it was necessary we should push on, and I 
proposed that he should mount Stewart's horse, and that 

80 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

Stewart should lead his horse to the settlement. My object 
in doing this was to afford him the opportunity of inspecting 
Nos. 1 and 2, in order that he might report thereupon to 
Capt. Swanston, and to accomplish this purpose I should 
have deprived myself of Stewart's assistance. Mr. Furgesson, 
without even thanking me for the offer, observed that black 
men were very careless, and that he should not trust his horse 

Mr. Eurgesson . . . him the 

gun, and he then wished me good morning. During the 
whole of our journey through the bush, the fires had been 
produced by phosphoric matches which Mr. Furgesson 
had, independent of which he also carried a steel with pre- 
pared punk. I felt much surprised at his conduct, and not 
knowing whether we might experience any difficulty in ob- 
taining fire, I said to him — If you leave us, what shall we do 
without your matches?" He simply replied — "O, you will 
have no difficulty in obtaining fire and 

Mount Cotterill was 
in full view, and he could have easily reached home that after- 
noon. We then proceeded N.W. about two miles, and as we 
were desirous of seeing the land to the westward, we left our 
horses with the servants, and ascended the summit of the 
Sugar Loaf Hill, about half a mile distant. We had now 
only a single-barrelled gun for our protection. We then al- 
tered our course nearly due N., and passed over some very 
good plains, and near the foot of a tier of hills. We crossed 
over two or three rivulets, beside one of which we dined. 
We then ....... 

last, on our way from 
to the line extending to the Villamanata Hills. We passed 
over two other creeks which appeared to flow in a southerly 
direction. We continued our course until we again reached 
the Salt Water River. The land of No. 1 is very good, and 
is well watered. We crossed three chains of ponds, about 
three miles distant from each other. We stayed on the banks 
all night, and as Ave did not reach the river till near dark and 
were fatigued, we did not . . hut 

About twelve at night we 
upon the hills to avoid the mosquitoes, and when we had 
descended into the bottom we found the fire almost out. We 
roused the party, and were at length, with the greatest diffi- 
culty, enabled to make the fire burn. It continued burning 

a Trip to Port Phillip. 81 

till daylight, and we then dried our clothes, had some hot 
tea, crossed the river and proceeded on our journey. We now 
altered our course, for the purpose of passing between the two 
hills which I had marked down on the 10th, and we arrived 
at the spot within a few minutes of the time we expected, so 
that the ....... 

a beautiful vale, extending 
apparently several miles to the northward, and extending over 
part of Nos. 6 and 7. This vale contains about 20,000 acres 
of the richest quality and of the finest herbage we saw, and in 
my opinion, superior to any of the land upon No. 9, or any of 
the sections. We found the continuation of the rivulet, and 
that it wound round the flat-topped hill, thereby affording a 
most eligible situation for a homestead. We then continued 
our course to another hill, near the margin of No. 7, which 
we ascended, and from this hill we 

course about eight miles across fine feeding land, and came 
upon a rapid stream of water flowing, like all the other rivers, 
from the N. to the S. We called this river the river Plenty, 
as it is the only stream, except the Barwon, deserving the 
name of a river. We dined at this river, and afterwards 
proceeded about one mile down it, in order to form an opinion 
as to its course ; and as we were desirous of reaching, if possi- 
ble, the river Yarra-Yarra that afternoon, we then crossed 
the river, and made an easterly course through forest land, 
about six , . 

We then proceeded 
about a mile south-east, when we were again stopped by a 
small stream, and found the land very boggy. After pro- 
ceeding about half a mile south, and then ascending along a 
high ridge, we determined to cross, if possible, the stream, 
and which, after much labour, we accomplished, but finding 
it impossible to continue our course, and the land between 
us and the Yarra-Yarra being very heavy and thickly wooded, 
we . . again to recross. .... 

secure tent to protect us from the wet. 

Feb. 15. — When we awoke this morning, we found to our 
dismay that the horses, with the exception of one mare, 
which had been tethered, were missing, and in about an hour 
Stewart returned, informing us that he had discovered the 
track, and that the horses were all gone. We were under 


82 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda of 

engagement to return to the settlement by twelve o'clock, 
and we calculated that we were distant seventeen miles in a 
straight line. ..... 

following their 
tracks, and here the instinct of that noble animal was most 
powerfully exhibited. The horses had been a circuit of at 
least 120 miles, and had never been within ten miles of the 
spot where we were stationed that night, and yet, instead of 
proceeding back upon their track, the horses made a direct 
course for the settlement round the hills, with as much care 
and sagacity as could have been manifested had they 

We then saddled, and 
crossed the river and continued the course to the settle- 
ment, which we reached at five minutes past twelve. Upon 
my arrival at the settlement, I found about one hundred and 
fifty natives, and I learned with much concern that an act of 
aggression had been committed upon one of the women, 
which required my immediate attention. Without waiting 
to refresh myself, or refit, I proceeded to the native huts, and 
ordered the person .... 

a violent contusion upon the back part of her head, and 
which I understood had been inflicted upon her by her hus- 
band. It appeared that she was one of . . and 
that the tribe had lately been on the Saltwater Eiver, and 
near the shepherds hut on No. 10; that this woman was 
proceeding towards the settlement to see her mother, and 
fell in with one of the shepherds, who laid hold of her, 
brought her to the hut, tied her hands behind her, and kept 
her there all night, and 

expecting to obtain redress. The natives are particularly 
jealous respecting their women, and they consider any inter- 
course of this kind is a contamination, and in every case punish 
the women fearfully, even to death. The natives, men, women, 
and children, assembled around me. I explained to them, 
through Buckley, our determination in every instance to 
punish the white man, and to protect the native to the utmost 
of our power, but we were not allowed to beat them . 

a Trip to Port Phillip, 83 

who had illtreated her . . she 
replied, " No ; " and I then enquired whether she had ever 
seen them before, she replied, "Yes, they were in the hut 
when the other man brought her in with her hands tied." 
I then enquired of the overseer, and found that a third man 
was at the hut, but had not been brought down. I then ex- 
plained to the two men the wickedness of their conduct, and 
how justly they would be punished if the natives had in- 
flicted an injury upon them ; and gave orders 

the woman 
identified him as the aggressor, that he would be removed 
from the settlement by the first ship, and be publicly taken 
away as a prisoner. I directed Buckley to explain to the 
whole tribe the course which I had directed to be pursued, 
and I could perceive by the expression of their countenances 
that they were highly satisfied. I then endeavoured to make 
the poor woman understand how much I commisserated with 
her situation, and I tied round her neck a red silk handker- 
chief, which delighted her exceedingly. 

All of the party 
and we all went in the captain's boat to the mouth of the 
river, and reached the 

Feb. 16. — By daylight this morning we were visited on 
board by four of our own tribe, in Mr. Batman's whale boat. 
The natives appeared much pleased with their visit, and sur- 
prised at the appearance of the vessel. They remained on 
board about a quarter of an hour, when having obtained a 
supply of biscuit, they left us. At — o'clock the vessel was 
under weierh ..... 

and proceeded towards 
the sea. Mr. Escoart came to anchor near the settlement at 
Indented Head. When we were near Arthur's Seat it became 
necessary to work the vessel through a narrow passage, about 

o 2 

84 Mr. Gellibrand's Memoranda, fyc. 

four miles long. This passage is not more than a mile and 
a half wide in some places, and the 

in the evening, so that the captain was afraid to proceed to 
sea that night, lest we should he driven upon Cape Otway, 
and in consequence came to anchor ahout three miles from 
the heads, under the lee of the land. 

Feb. 17. — We got under weigh at daylight, and made a 
safe passage between the heads of Port Phillip 

about eleven o'clock at night we reached White's Hotel, at 


The natives are a fine race of men, many of them handsome 
in their persons, and all well made. They are strong and 
athletic, very intelligent, and quick in their perceptions . 

preparing meat . . . The women, and especially 
the young ones, are particularly modest in their behaviour, 
and also in their dress. They all appear to be well disposed, 
and very fond of bread and potatoes. In the winter season 
they live principally on fish and game. Upon the 

appearance of the country, I feel persuaded that they must 
exert themselves considerably in obtaining subsistence, and 
from their extreme partiality to bread and potatoes, I feel not 

Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit, fyc. 85 

the slightest doubt but that they may be all brought to habits 
of industry and civilization, when the mode of obtaining 
potatoes and wheat ..... 

country is generally . . open, flat, champaign 

country, with abundance of verdure, and well watered. It 
far exceeds my expectations, although I was prepared to 
expect something very superior. I consider the representa- 
tions of Mr. Batman fully borne out, and from the account 
given by Buckley, I am disposed to believe 

I this day 
settlement at Port Phillip, having taken a trip over in the 
" Adelaide " with some of my sheep ; I found the young 
woman before spoken of living at the settlement with her 
husband and his other wives. She had quite recovered from 
the contusion, and her husband was again reconciled to her.* 

Art. X. — Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit in South Aus- 
tralia. By the Rev. Julian Edmund Woods, Penola, 
South Australia. 

[Read before the Institute, 29th September, 1858.] 

I propose in this paper to describe briefly to the Institute 
a tertiary formation, which is only interesting inasmuch as it 
furnishes clear evidence of immense changes occurring in 
this continent during the tertiary epoch. I have chosen it 
as a subject for the facility of its description, and because its 
leading features can be done justice to within moderate limits. 
There are no fossils to be described, nor any difficult arrange- 

* The Editor hopes that the thread of the narrative will be pursued, 
notwithstanding the many spaces that exist. Each space represents the 
proportionate amount of text wanting. — J. M., Ed. 

86 Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit 

ment of rocks requisite. I have merely to give a few plain 
facts, patent to the most superficial observer, and to draw 
very intelligible inferences from them. If the paper should 
appear incomplete, it is because I wish to do no more than 
allude to details, the knowledge of which more competent 
men may hereafter extend. 

The few fossiliferous rocks that South Australia possesses, 
are all, with one exception, of the tertiary epoch. That one 
exception is at Willunga, where the formation is clearly 
silurian. None of the tertiary beds have been as yet de- 
scribed, but their classification will not, I apprehend, be a 
matter of much difficulty. As they are connected with my 
subject, I will here indicate where they occur, as far as the 
colony is at present known, beginning with the most recent. 
All round the coast from Adelaide to Port Augusta, and from 
the Coorong to the mouth of the Glenelg, shells of existing 
species are found, loosely imbedded in sand or mud to some 
distance above the sea level. Where the country is flat (as 
near Guichen Bay), this is continued sometimes seventeen 
miles from the shore. The sea has left this most recent 
formation as the land has been slowly upheaved. Where the 
deposit goes to any depth, the same shells are found imbedded 
in limestone, and what would be thought a different bed, is 
shown by the included fossils to be of the same geological 
age. Immediately under this, at Adelaide, another very re- 
cent bed, containing shells, is found. The inclosed testacea 
are all species now existing near Adelaide, or on the adjacent 
coast in a more northerly direction. They generally show a 
more genial climate than that which obtains at present, but 
as the deposit is a very small one, this difference may be 
owing more to local circumstances than to any great variation 
of the physical geography of the locality. Next to this again, 
and immediately following, as far as I can ascertain, though 
my researches are not sufficiently extensive to assert that no 
other deposit intervenes, there occurs a quartzose limestone- 
bed, whose extensive cross or diagonal stratification shows it 
to have been deposited from a deep sea current. This con- 
tains no fossils, at least such as can with certainty be deter- 
mined. The next beds in succession, and the last as far as 
we know, are the Mount Gambier deposits, which contain 
shells, mostly of extinct species. It is not quite certain whe- 
ther these latter should be called upper Eocene or lower Mio- 
cene, but more extended investigation will, doubtless, prove 
them to belong to the former. I say this because I have 

in South Australia. 87 

found fossils which properly belong to the London clay, and 
it would be difficult to imagine uncommon shells having so 
wide a range as the lower Eocene in England, and the lower 
Miocene in Australia. I have in the list of tertiary rocks 
just detailed, omitted those beds which are found on the 
banks of the Murray, particularly at the north-west bend. 
I have never had an opportunity of examining these deposits, 
but from specimens forwarded to me I think they are con- 
temporaneous with the Mount Gambier limestones. There 
is a great variety of nautilidce, terebratulce and pyrulce of 
extraordinary size. I have also seen one specimen of the 
plagiostoma spinosum of the same species as that which occurs 
in the chalk at home. More extensive data will enable 
future enquirers to determine the precise position of these 
strata, and I am sure they will well repay the trouble of any 
one who shall investigate them hereafter. 

The deposits I wish to call attention to on this occasion are 
those already described as owing their origin to deposition 
from a deep sea current. They are found from Lacepede Bay, 
(as far as I have ascertained) to Bivoli Bay. Patches also 
occur at Mount Gambier, and at some places near the mouth 
of the Glenelg. Where they are seen most to advantage is, 
however, at Guichen Bay ; and it is to observations made in 
that locality, I shall confine myself more immediately. The 
whole eastern and northern sides of Guichen Bay are com- 
posed of low sand-hills, scarcely rising thirty feet above the 
water level ; but on the southern side quite a change takes 
place. The sand is replaced by rough, craggy rocks, which, 
though not rising very high, are bold and abrupt, sometimes 
presenting a perpendicular face to the heavy surge which 
beats upon that coast. Seen at a distance, one would ima- 
gine that these rocks were divided into huge strata, fourteen 
or sixteen feet thick, but on a closer inspection, another, 
though less distinct kind of stratification is discernible. In 
addition to the great divisions (which are so distinct as almost 
to lead one to suppose that three or four huge slabs of stone 
were laid upon one another,) there is cross stratification. 
This is a lamination which divides the beds into strata about 
two inches thick, but they are never horizontal, like the great 
divisions, are seldom parallel to each other, and never con- 
tinuous across the divisions spoken of above. Now all these 
appearances, taken in connection with the mineral composi- 
tion which I shall just now describe, are clearly indicative of 
deposition from an ocean current. I need not go through all 

88 Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit 

the reasons which make this conclusion apparent. It will be 
sufficient to say that the want of horizontality in the smaller 
strata is due to the force of the current, and the greater divi- 
sions are caused by an alteration in the direction of the stream, 
which, before it would deposit any new matter, would carry 
away the lighter superficial particles, and wear down to a 
smooth surface all inequalities. The material of the rock 
would appear, at first sight, to be a coarse-grained sandstone. I 
should call it a calcareous sandstone. Under the microscope 
it is found to consist of small particles of shells, worn by at- 
trition into thin scales and small grains of quartzose sand. 
It is freely acted upon by weak acids, and on a quali- 
tative analysis showed a large proportion of silica, lime and 
magnesia (carbonates), with small proportions of sesquioxide 
of iron and sulphate of lime, but no appreciable quantity of 
phosphates nor organic matter. It would not be difficult to 
show that the formation was deposed in deep water, perhaps 
at some considerable distance from the coast ; for anything 
but a slow-moving large body of water out of the influence of 
land would certainly carry down larger fragments of shells 
than what are here seen. From the great attrition the parti- 
cles have been subjected to, one can gather that they were 
carried a long distance. The place where the deposit is seen 
to best advantage is in a small bay on the southern side of 
Cape Lannes, which with its projecting reef forms the termi- 
nation of Guichen Bay on the south. Here the rocks are 
seen in bold sections, over fifty feet in thickness. This little 
bay is very deep, so that the water washes the foot of the 
cliffs nearly all round. In some places the wearing of the 
surf has undermined the cliffs and caused them to fall in, or 
the spray has eaten into their soft, friable texture, giving 
them a wild jagged outline. These features, united with 
irregular cross stratification, the dark hue of the stone, 
the heaps of ruins which are scattered about, and the boiling 
of the surf as it breaks heavily against the rocks, even on the 
calmest day, would make a grand and sublime scene, were it on 
.a somewhat larger scale. However, even as it is, it is wild and 
desolate, and the little verdure which the Mesembryanthemum 
give as they creep down the surface of the rock, or hang 
swaying in the wind, tends little to soften the savage aspect 
of the place. There are, as I have before stated, no fossils, 
but the summit of each cliff is topped by a stratum of com- 
pact limestone, horizontally deposed, and lying unconforma- 
bly. This, I presume, is the relic of the last coast action 

in South Australia. 89 

before the deposits were upheaved to their present position ; 
and from the fact that the same stone, lying in the same 
manner farther inland, contains fossils of existing species, 
I have little doubt that it is of the same age as the very recent 
beds spoken of before, as existing all round the coast. 

The current from which the deposits under consideration 
arose must have been of very wide extent, and have deposited 
its sediment very equally, because the upheaval which has 
raised the land portion, has given rise to rocks of the same 
height all along the shore, sometimes at a considerable dis- 
tance from it. Thus there is an archipelago of small rocks 
encircling Guichen Bay, which rise out of the sea like 
patches of table land, and a reef called Cape Jaffa Keef is a 
chain of such flat-topped rocks, which run twelve miles out 
to sea. I have said that the stone is soft and friable, and 
that the sea easily corrodes it away. Many singular instances 
of this decomposition are perceptible. At a small distance 
from Cape Lannes there is a narrow strip of tubular rock, 
narrower at the middle than at the ends. The surf has 
undermined the centre part, so that a natural bridge of stone, 
supported by two buttresses, is now the result. Again, the 
constant action of water has made deep caves at the bottom 
■of some of the cliffs, and in some instances the beating water 
has bored a sort of chimney up to the surface, giving rise to 
the well-known blow holes. One of these is pretty large, 
and when the tide is high, and a heavy swell on, the spray is 
dashed to a considerable height out of the dry rock, with 
a roar that may be heard a long way off. But there is, per- 
haps, no more singular effect visible than that which is caused 
by the action of the spray in those rocks most exposed to its 
influence. The tops of such are covered with pinnacles as 
delicate and varied in form as reef coral. A mere description 
could scarcely do justice to the strange appearance they pre- 
sent. It seems at first sight as if the rocks were covered 
with slender stone shrubs, tapering gradually to a point, or 
as if the roof of a cave, studded with stalactites, were turned 
upside down and placed on the sea coast. Anything but 
spray must have long ago broken them to pieces, and even 
then, how they have been spared, while the surrounding rock 
has been worn away, does not appear very plain. It would 
appear to me that they must be the result of concretions 
of the lime and sand, caused by the percolating of water 
through the beds prior to upheaval. This would, and did in 
fact, in other places harden certain portions, and enable them 

90 Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit 

better to resist the wear of water. Instances of this concre- 
tion are very common where the action of the spray has not 
destroyed the surrounding matrix. At one cliff out of reach 
of the sea, where portions of the rock have fallen away, con- 
cretions are very numerous. The sides of the rock are 
covered with them running through the strata like roots, or 
hanging down from the roof so as easily to be mistaken for 
stalactites, if they were not a little too crooked and irregular. 
Their appearance is just that of bent coral, about half an 
inch or more in diameter. The outside of these concretions 
is just like the rock itself, that is, are composed of small 
fragments agglutinated together ; but on breaking them the 
inside is found to be hard and compact, like cherty lime- 
stone or dolomites. They are usually formed in concentric 
rings. I do not suppose that the action of the water in 
causing them has been merely mechanical. I suspect, from 
the large quantity of magnesia contained in them, that a 
doubly basic salt of carbonate of lime and magnesia is formed 
by chemical decomposition. Slow filtration of water might 
alone be a sufficient cause, because it is certainly from some- 
thing of this kind that the layers of flint in the Mount Gam- 
bier limestones are chiefly owing. This is a department of 
geology where investigation is much required, for the " pot 
stones " in the chalk at home, which owe their origin to fil- 
tration of some kind, are by no means clearly accounted for. 
In addition to the corrosive action just described, the wearing 
of the strata by waves is very considerable, and thus we may 
see that the ocean is here indemnifying itself for the losses 
occasioned by the upheaval of the land. There can be no 
doubt that the sea will not be long destroying the beds within 
its reach, if the work of destruction proceeds as quickly as it 
has within a comparatively short space of time. We may, 
therefore, witness two phenomena not often associated to- 
gether, namely, the land rising and the sea encroaching 
rapidly. It is interesting to observe how the sea soon re- 
places what it removes, and the seam of limestone which tops 
the rocks unconformably, answers the question which may be 
asked : what has become of the immense masses of rock which 
have been already destroyed ? Such, for instance, as those 
portions which must have joined the coast with the rocky 
islands which fringe it. However, no conception of the great 
work of denudation which has taken place can be gathered 
from the comparatively small ravages in Guichen Bay. My 
belief is that the whole coast, perhaps as far as the mouth of 

in South Australia. 91 

the Glenelg, and as far inland as Mount Gambier, has been 
covered with the same deep sea deposit now described, and it 
has afterwards been removed by coast action as the land 
slowly rose. My reasons for this opinion are founded on 
having noticed, at various parts of the country, little hillocks 
of rock, of small extent, and about fourteen feet in thickness, 
so identical in composition (even to the concretions) with the 
Guichen Bay formation, as to leave little doubt on my mind 
of their having been continuous with it. At Mount Gam- 
bier there is such a deposit. It is situated at a place called 
the Cave Station. Though rather more ferruginous, and 
containing occasionally rather larger fragments of shells, and 
sometimes even a whole oyster shell, there can be little doubt 
of its identity. It lies of course upon the limestones of 
Mount Gambier, where there is every reason to believe all 
the rest of the formation rests. The hillock now alluded to 
has formerly been studded with concretionary pinnacles, but 
of course much water worn, and barely jutting out from the 
surface. What with the hardening consequent on chemical 
action, and the ferruginous cement, the rock is almost as 
hard as granite, contrasting strongly with the soft white rock 
on which it rests. The hardness is doubtless the cause of its 
preservation. Another place where a patch is seen is at a 
station not far from the western bank of the mouth of the 
Glenelg. In this place (to which I regret I could only afford 
a passing examination) perfect shells are found, mostly species 
of Astarte, Ostrea, Pecten, and Cardium. The strata, though 
not apparently so thick, were quite as compact as those just 
mentioned. I noticed also above the cliffs at Portland a 
thin deposit of oyster shells. The colour and mineral struc- 
ture of the rock in which they are, as seen from a short dis- 
tance, seemed to me to be very like the same deposit, but 
I would hardly venture to say that it was really such. It is 
rather singular that it should rest upon a deposit which, if not 
identical with the Mount Gambier Eocene, is at least very 
close in succession. The Spatangus Forbesii occurs at both 
Portland and Mount Gambier, and many Terebratidce and 
Pectens are identical ; but the cellepora coral present in the 
latter has not as yet been found in the former. This latter 
fact may be due to local circumstances, and I have very little 
doubt that the beds will eventually be found to be contempo- 

And now having given a description of the beds at Guichen 
Bay, their structure and other features, as well as what I 

92 Remarks on a Tertiary Deposit 

consider to be portions of the same elsewhere, let me briefly 
describe the evidence they afford. We know that the land 
is rising at present, and we have fossiliferous rocks of the 
present period where the water has recently receded. These 
are our latest Australian tertiaries. Our earliest in South 
Australia are, as far as we know, the beds previously alluded 
to as Eocene. While these latter were forming, the land was 
sinking, and we obtain the knowledge of that fact by many 
reasons, such as the following I now give. Darwin has justly 
remarked that very thick fossiliferous beds are only formed 
during subsidence, and this is borne out by the thinness of 
the beds lately formed during a period of upheaval. The 
same illustrious geologist has proved that the whole bed of 
the Pacific is sinking, and that the subsidence is giving rise 
to coral islands far away from land. Now at this part of 
South Australia we have very thick beds, and those too of 
coral, which I have traced 100 miles inland without any 
break or sign of land during the epoch of their formation. 
I think there can be little question that the sea bed must 
have subsided where any great thickness of coral is found, 
because it will not live below 30 fathoms, and must soon have 
perished unless the lowering of the bottom kept pace with its 
building operations, or at all events would not give rise to 
thick strata, unless during subsidence. We have, then, evi- 
dence of subsidence and upheaval. Between these periods 
we find beds deposited from a deep sea current, which have 
afterwards been washed away, probably by the denudation 
they were exposed to during their uprising. I apprehend, 
therefore, the series of changes which have taken place to 
be somewhat in the following manner : the land was sinking 
slowly during the Eocene period, and the coral animal made 
up for the subsidence by its continual labours, just as it does 
now in the Pacific. Though this would prevent any very 
deep water being found on the site of the former land, yet 
the subsidence would, of course, remove the reef further and 
further away from the land, and render it more exposed to 
the action of the sea. Extensive changes in the relative 
position of the land would give rise to changes of temperature, 
and new ocean currents would be the result. Now the coral 
would not have stopped building as long as the animal could 
keep pace with the subsidence, but any current bearing sedi- 
ment would kill it speedily. Darwin, and other voyagers, 
give many instances of this ; but a stream of sediment, did, 
according to the evidence we have, break over the coral and 

in South Australia. 93 

terminate its existence. This deposit was, therefore, stopped 
by a new one taking its place, -which was of quite a different 
nature, being that which we find at Guichen Bay. How 
long after this the land continued to subside cannot be guessed, 
for we do not, and cannot, now know the extent of the beds 
formed subsequently. "We see, however, that a change came 
at last, and upheaval followed, but so slow that coast action 
had time to remove successively, except in one or two places, 
all that the deep water current had thrown down, leaving 
only the dead coral exposed to view. All the facts given 
above bear out the correctness of these views, but of course I 
am far from claiming adhesion to them as perfectly certain. 
Indeed I have rather occasion to warn the Institute that 
neither my attainments nor habits of inquiry at all constitute 
me an infallible guide, and I shall consider myself fortunate 
if future and more experienced enquirers find nothing to 
correct in my theories. With regard to the nature of the 
rocks at Guichen Bay, I will just remark that though ocean 
currents generally seem to be clear water on the surface, they 
must carry sediment along the bottom, and that wherever 
soundings have been taken in them, the bottom has been 
found to consist of shells and fine sand. Sometimes, how- 
ever, currents are found charged with sediment at the sur- 
face, such as those proceeding from the mouths of rivers, and 
then the water occasionally has a muddy tinge even at great 
distances from the coast. 

I would extend this paper beyond reasonable limits, were 
I to give all the facts I have noticed connected with the sub- 
ject. I will, therefore, conclude by calling attention to the 
vast operations of nature which are here disclosed. It is not 
alone the enormous subsidence which at first caused a deep 
coral reef and then an open sea (which must have maintained 
for ages to give rise to such a thickness of sedimentary rock), 
which must excite surprise. Nor is it the long period of up- 
heaval. But the immense amount of denudation which has 
removed hundreds of square miles of thick beds of rock, is 
certainly a work of such magnitude as to excite wonder and 
amazement. At all events there is a fine agricultural country 
over the spot where such changes were operated, and the 
Mount Gambier volcano is a witness as to the cause which 
rescued land from sea. Many interesting questions remain 
to be asked, which can only be answered by very extended 
investigation. We might enquire whether the subsidence 
was very general in Australia. Also, whether the bed of the 

94 Description and System of Working 

Pacific, now submerged, was then a continent. If so, we 
might farther ask, is its disappearance a compensation in the 
earth's crust for the extensive elevation we experience here ? 
These enquiries may never be answered, but at least they 
let us know that there are more things in the earth than are 
accounted for in our present philosophy, and all the little 
facts we gain bring us nearer to that ocean shore where we 
gaze towards the boundless horizon of the omnipotence of 
that God who made these things which we pry into but 
cannot understand. 

Art. XI. — Description and System of Working of the Flagstaff 
Observatory. — By Professor George Neumayer. 

[With three Plates.] 
[Eead before the Institute, 20th October, 1858.] 

When the first proposition was made by me to the Govern- 
ment of this colony to establish a Magnetic Observatory, I 
proposed to select, for the site of the same, a spot on the 
southern side of the Yarra. I made that selection because 
the geological formations were more favourable there than on 
this side of the river, and preliminary observations on the 
magnetic elements had established the superiority of that 
ground over any other round Melbourne; further, the 
business part of the city, being more remote, was not 
likely to cause disturbances and inconvenience ; and, lastly, 
the greater vicinity of the harbour was well calculated to faci- 
litate the communication with masters of ships — an impor- 
tant condition required for the entire success of the Obser- 

It was only after some hesitation on my part, and after 
having selected two other places near that originally pro- 
posed, that I followed the suggestion made to me by the Go- 
vernment, to investigate the suitability of the Flagstaff Hill, 
with a view to making it a site for the proposed Observatory, 
as the buildings within the enclosure of the late signal station 
would be available for that purpose. The fact that the 
Flagstaff Hill stands upon decomposed basalt, covered to 
depths from 10 to 20 feet with tertiary gravel, prompted me 
to be cautious, and a long series of preliminary observations, 
made within the enclosure and on the surrounding ground, 



Elabe N°: 

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- ■-':.'- y.r'.msTn. £ _:- 

^ J bttrpjii WJ}. 

of the Flagstaff Observatory. 95 

showed at once that the spot was not altogether free from 
local disturbances, and that only the portion towards the 
northern limit of the hill could be made available as a spot 
on which to erect a house for determining the absolute values 
of the magnetic elements. In short, I arrived at the con- 
clusion that the locality might be made use of, provided an 
addition were made to the ground of the former station ; at 
the same time I was aware that, to give the magnetical obser- 
vations their full value, an additional amount of labour 
would be required, of a nature calculated to keep a perpetual 
check on the working of the instruments indicating the 
horary variations. Taking further into consideration its 
magnificent position for meteorological observations and the 
propriety of selecting it as a site for an Observatory con- 
nected with nautical matters, which site is likely to facilitate 
the labours having for their aim a successful system of me- 
teorology at sea, I thought myself justified in making an 
application for the locality as a site for an Observatory. 

The facts which are calculated to illustrate this matter, and 
to justify my final choice, do not come within the scope of 
this paper, but will form part of the first printed report ema- 
nating from this institution ; still I could not venture to give 
a description of the Observatory intelligible to every one, 
without introducing the subject by some remarks bearing 
upon the position chosen for the establishment. 

Proceeding now to the object of this paper, I shall com- 
mence with the description and examination of the different 
buildings and contrivances which form the Observatory. 

The essential parts of the magnetic department are as 
follows : — 

The House for Observation on the horary motions in the 
three magnetical elements, declinations, or variation of the 
needle, inclination or dip of the needle, and horizontal inten- 
sity, is erected, or more properly speaking, sunk into the 
ground nearly in the centre of the present enclosure, (vide 
D, plate No. 1) . The hill inclines towards the south-east. By 
placing this building in the centre, the object in view was to 
prevent accidental disturbances as much as possible, and still 
to facilitate the communication with the different other 
buildings of the Observatory. The foundation is laid 12 feet 
below the surface, and consists of strong timber ; upon this 
are resting the double walls of a room containing the instru- 
ments for horary variations. The ground plan of the room 
represents a polygram of 16 sides, with a diameter of 12 feet, 

96 Description and System of Working 

and the door towards N.E. A skylight in the centre of its 
pyramidal roof throws the light npon the mirrors underneath, 
and a flight of steps leads to the surface {vide plate No. 2). 

The stands whereupon the instruments are placed consist 
of sandstone, and are fixed in such a manner as to make it 
impossible that any motion could be communicated to them, 
through the floor or the walls of the house, from wind and 
other accidental vibrations. The principal object in placing 
the instruments in this underground building is to prevent 
sudden changes in temperature, which wouldnecessarily have 
an influence upon the readings, although compensation for 
temperature is applied to the deflecting magnets. This object 
is so well attained that, while the open air shows at times a 
daily range of 35° F., the greatest range as yet registered in 
the room is 14° F., and on a common day the range is hardly 
exceeding 4° or 5° F. 

The stone pillar carrying the tubes for the different instru- 
ments is placed nearly in the centre of the room, and a second 
pillar is placed outside, for the purpose of putting thereupon 
a collimator, for the purpose of checking the unchanged po- 
sition of the tubes and mirrors intended for the registration 
of the instruments. 

The material of this house, as well as that of the next one, 
is wood, and the joinings, nails, &c, are of copper and brass, 
iron having been carefully avoided. 

The House {vide C, plate No. 1) for measuring the 
absolute values of the magnetic elements, is situated near the 
northern boundary of the enclosure, in a north-west direction 
from the former one. 

The ground plan of this building is a parallelogram ; the 
axis of the same parallel with the longer side is in the mag- 
netic meridian, and the entrance is towards the east. 

Two square stone pillars are erected in a similar way to 
those in the house before described. 

The instruments put upon these stones are a magnetic 
theodolite and a dipping circle, which receive the light neces- 
sary for reading them by a large skylight in the roof of the 
building. Although great care was taken in erecting this 
room, the construction was not a matter of so difficult a na- 
ture, as changes in temperature are of no consequence in 
reference to the observations made therein, because such 
changes must be observed and brought into calculation when 
reducing the original readings. 

The small dimensions of the magnets in use, according to 


Haie> N°2 


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To o.ccv^n^iu.,iyRcf;jrezim ay&r's jiuper TeatL iefin-e-t^e-F/iilJnH.Oci fSSS 

of the Flagstaff Observatory. 97 

the system of instruments we have adopted, greatly facilitate 
the determination of this temperature, as they rapidly and 
thoroughly follow every change which may take place, thus 
preventing any serious error arising from sudden changes 
in which the magnets could not thoroughly participate. 
Different little openings are made through the walls for the 
purpose of enabling the observer to take bearings towards 
well-defined distant objects, the azimuths of which, having 
been once carefully ascertained, will assist us in arriving 
sooner at a correct value of the declination than would other- 
wise be possible. One of those little openings brings this 
house in connection with 

A Little Brick Toiver (vide E, plate No. 1), situated in the 
astronomical meridian passing through that pier in the abso- 
lute house which supports the magnetic theodolite. In the 
centre of this circular room a stone pillar is erected, upon 
which is placed a universal instrument, which is principally 
made use of for ascertaining the astronomical meridian, and 
transferring it afterwards to the magnetic theodolite. The 
instrument is placed at such an elevation as to prevent the 
possibility of the observer's view being obstructed when en- 
gaged in taking terrestrial objects, and the revolving nature 
of the roof admits of observations being made in any part of 
the sky, and towards any direction on the horizon. 

To enable the eye to be brought to the level of this instru- 
ment, a circular flight of steps leads up to it. A second 
isolated pillar is erected near the steps, upon which are 
placed the chronometers, to bring them within reach of the 

The three buildings I have just described form the essen- 
tial part of the magnetic observatory, in addition to which I 
have only to mention the computation room, to which pur- 
pose one of the rooms of the dwelling house is appropriated. 

Proceeding to the further arrangements of the institution, 
I commence with the description of the house containing the 
transit room and the room for photometrical measurements 
(vide B, plate No. 1). In reference to the former I hardly need 
make any remark, as the construction of a transit room is 
familiar to every one. With regard to the contrivances for a 
successful management of photometrical measurements, it is 
chiefly required that the instrument should be placed in such 
a position as to admit of observations being made over the 
whole sky. To fulfil this requisite condition the photometer 
is raised upon a high stone pillar, by means of which its 


98 Description and System of Working 

mirrors are brought close to the roof, and this again can be 
removed, so as to expose the instrument entirely to the open 
air. Round the top part of the just mentioned pillar runs a 
stage, to which a flight of steps leads from below. 

On the highest portion of the enclosure, distant from all 

A Meteorological stand {vide G, plate No. 1, also plate No. 
3) is erected. The little house, if I may call it so, which con- 
tains the thermometers, is in its principle of construction 
similar to that of Lawson's, but it received such alterations and 
additions as to make it respond to the demands of this coun- 
try, in which the soil attains so high a temperature. To pre- 
vent all influences of the soil, the stand is raised upon a plat- 
form five feet above the level of the surrounding ground, the 
bulbs of the thermometers thus assuming a height of ten feet 
above the soil, the smallest distance which can be given them to 
prevent the effects of radiation. To protect the thermometers 
against sun, rain, and wind, the upper part of the meteor- 
ological stand is moveable round the flagstaff, which passes 
through its bottom and roof. A wooden disk, fastened to 
the bottom of the little house, serves as a limbus, with the 
help of which, in addition to a small quadrant attached to 
one of the sides in a perpendicular plane, we are enabled to 
ascertain, by equal altitudes, the meridian passing through 
the centre, thus obtaining an excellent means for registering 
the wind by the vane on the top of the flagstaff. A tin box, 
of a cylindrical form, containing the ozone paper, is hoisted up 
to the top of the mast for ozonometric measurements. 

In the close vicinity of this meteorological stand, the Rain- 
guage {vide H, plate No. 1) is placed, and also the thermo- 
meter for temperature of soil and radiation; and farther 
towards the south arrangements have been made for correct- 
ing the sextants of captains, with regard to eccentricity and 
the error of division {vide F, plate No. 1). 

The Dwelling-house {vide A, plate No. 1) is chiefly taken up 
by the offices for computation. The only apartments of parti- 
cular interest are the front-room, appropriated for barometri- 
cal observations, the comparison of meteorological instruments 
belonging to masters of ships, and to the electric telegraph, 
which brings the Flagstaff Observatory in immediate connec- 
tion with the Astronomical Observatory at Williamstown. 
In addition, a little room up stairs should not be forgotten, 
in which arrangements are made for electrical observations ; 
the stand for the electrometer is fixed to the wall in a per- 



PW N° 3 


Scale 8 feet to one Inch 

To rifrtnnpa>iy Tto+' A 'eu?n dyers /taper recucf in/^ore. tA-e. PhU Insls. Oct 1838 


of the Fuigstaff Observatory. 99 

fcctly steady manner. From this room a communication is 
established with a platform on the roof, to enable the ob- 
server to descend with the least possible delay from the roof 
down to the stand for the electrometer. 

Part of the same room is devoted to the photographic ap- 
paratus, and part to a small mechanical workshop, intended 
for keeping the instruments constantly in repair. 

I have now accomplished the task I proposed in describing 
the buildings of the Observatory, and in connection with 
them it remains only for me to explain my reasons for scat- 
tering them over the whole ground, instead of uniting them 
in one compact whole. 

The explanation is simply this ; I had to make use of the 
buildings of the late signal station, as I found them, in the 
best possible way, and the circumstances referred to in the 
beginning of this paper did not admit of my free disposal of 
the ground, and I was compelled to select certain portions 
for the building of the magnetic department. The plan of 
arrangement ultimately adopted being in no way injurious to 
the magnetic observations, I felt no hesitation in following it. 

Before leaving the exclusively descriptive part of this paper 
I have still to enumerate the different instruments which are 
in use in the observatory. They are as follows : — 

In the Horary House — 

Differential Declinatorium. 

„ Inclinatorium. 

„ Apparatus for h. intensity. 

(According to Lamont's construction, and executed in the workshops of 
the Royal Observatory in Munich. ) 

In the Absolute House — 
A Magnetic Theodolite, with all appurtenances for determin- 
ing the three magnetic elements, apparatus for deflec- 
tions and oscillations, and differential inclinatorium. 
(As above. ) 
A Dipping Circle, with four needles and apparatus for invert- 
ing the poles. 

(From the atelier of Inspector Meyerstein, in Gottingen.) 
In the Circular Brick Tower — 
A Universal Instrument. 

(From the Mechanical Institute of Ertel and Son, in Munich. ) 

In the Transit House — 
A Transit Instrument from Potter, London. 
' h2 

100 Description and System of Working 

A Photometer , according to Steinheil's principle. 

(Executed in the Optical Institute of C. Steinheil, Munich. ) 

A Six-feet Refractor, as above. 

In the Dwelling House — 
An Electrometer on Quetelet's principle. 
A Telegraphic Instrument, executed by E. Merfield, Mel- 
A large Photographic Apparatus, for charts, maps, &c. 
A Small Photographic Apparatus, for scientific objects. 

(From the atelier of Messrs. Lerebour et Secretan, Paris. ) 
Chronometers, sextants, barometers, thermometers, tubes, 
heliotropes, balances, microscopes, turning lathe, tools, &c. 

Having given an outline of the circumstances which led to 
the selection of the Flagstaff Hill as a site for a magnetical 
and nautical observatory, and having given a sketch of the 
different buildings and their construction, I now arrive at the 
second part which forms the subject of this paper, namely, 
the system of working. 

To be successful in illustrating the labors undertaken by 
me, and the methods I have applied, I cannot begin in a bet- 
ter manner than by stating in a few precise terms the objects 
of the Flagstaff Observatory. 

First amongst these comes the advancement of the science 
of Terrestrial Magnetism in its theoretical and practical scope, 
and more especially in reference to those investigations which 
will ultimately give us a clue by which to connect the pheno- 
mena of meteorology and magnetism. Further, to assist the 
great systems of observations carried on at sea, with a view 
to improve ocean navigation, and to endeavour to establish 
and support similar institutions on the Australian coast and 
adjacent seas. 

By carefully weighing and realizing the full purport of the 
foregoing ideas, we perceive at once that they are all closely 
connected with each other ; in fact, that Avhile we are all 
pursuing any one of them, we can hardly exclude the others, 
if we have clearly defined views as to the best means 
which can be adopted. We further perceive at once that it 
must be one of the first principles of an institution of this kind, 
that the simultaneous nature of phenomena should be re- 
corded and established, and that an Observatory, aiming at 
such a high position in reference to the general system, must 
keep hourly registers on meteorology and magnetism. 

These were the conclusions which guided me in forming 

of the Flagstaff Observatory. 101 

my plans as to the mode of registration; and as no institution 
of a similar nature has as yet been established in the southern 
hemisphere, I did not for a moment doubt but that my efforts 
would be crowned with success ; consequently I took mea- 
sures adapted to place the Observatory, from the beginning, 
upon a right footing : a system of hourly observation and 
registration having been organised, which has gradually come 
into operation. 

The meteorological instruments have been registered hourly 
from the 1st of March, 1858. The atmospheric-electrical 
tension has been hourly observed from the 15th of April last, 
and other horary variations in terrestrial magnetism from 
the 1st of May. The delay in starting some of the operations 
was owing to the fact that the different buildings became 
only gradually available for the purpose, so that complete 
hourly registrations have only been carried out in every de- 
partment from the 1st of May. 

The order in which the registrations are made at present 
is as follows : — 

At 1 m. 30 s. previous to the full hour the barometer is 

At the hour itself, the instruments for horary variations in 
terrestrial magnetism. 

At 1 m. 30 s. after the hour, the dry and wet bulb, black 
and white bulb, and soil thermometer are read. 

At 2 m. wind, rain, clouds, &c. 

At 5 m. the electrical tension of the atmosphere is observed. 

Thus we bring the whole set of readings within the short 
space of 6 m. 30 s., and this time is strictly adhered to, both 
night and day. 

This plan of observing is only changed at times of great 
disturbance, either in magnetism, electricity, or in the at- 
mosphere generally — all necessary instruments being then 
recorded from 5 to 5 minutes, and even, if required, from 
minute to minute. If we now take into consideration that 
550 observations are thus registered in a day, it will be at once 
evident that we must take such steps as will keep all the ac- 
cumulating facts continually in view, and this is effected by 
making the most necessary reductions at once, and winding 
up every five days 5 work by determining the means for every 
hour, and from them again the means for the period. It must 
be borne in mind that, while doing so, it is incumbent on the 
staff of the Observatory to copy all single registrations again, 
for the purpose of classifying them. It can only be by 

102 Description and System of Working 

means of such an arrangement that we are enabled to keep 
our registers in such order as to have them ready for publica- 
tion whenever it may be desirable. 

With the systematically registered observations, we may 
further enumerate the whole series of absolute measure- 
ments in terrestrial magnetism, which are accomplished at the 
beginning of every month, and which occupy, under the most 
favourable circumstances, one day and a half of consecutive 
observations. These observations are chiefly intended to 
keep a constant check over the instruments in the horary 
house — a precaution we cannot be too particular in adhering 
to, especially in a country like this, where no observations of 
the kind have hitherto been made. 

The magnetic part of the Observatory will, in its working, 
furnish the facts on which to base a magnetic survey of the 
colony, which will be carried out with the staff and the in- 
struments of the Observatory, a large addition to which is 
expected early, namely, those used by Professor Lamont in 
making the magnetic survey of Spain. 

The collating of ships' logs is also carried on systemati- 
cally, and those received are commonly of a two-fold nature; 
either it is an abstract log issued by the Board of Trade or 
Lieutenant Maury, or it is a common ship's journal. In the 
latter case the log is thoroughly copied, but in such a way as 
to classify the meteorological facts at once, according to geo- 
graphical position, and for that purpose the ocean is divided, 
on Maury's principle, into squares of 5 degrees longitude and 
5 degrees latitude, each to receive the facts recorded as having 
happened therein. In the former case only facts of a pecu- 
liar character are extracted therefrom, and these facts are 
classified according to Melbourne mean time, in order that 
we may be able to recognise simultaneous occurrences in 

With regard to our coasts, I am happy to say that my 
proceedings have been largely appreciated by the masters of 
ships trading thereon, and that as the common form of log 
is devoid of matter of interest for scientific investigation, I 
was requested to issue forms which would facilitate the re- 
gistration of meteorological facts, and a largely-signed petition 
from masters of coasters was handed to me, which I hope 
will lead to the organization of a meteorological system on 
this coast. 

As it was my desire only to illustrate the mode of register- 
ing the systematic observations, I will not allude to the large 

of the Flagstaff Observatory. 103 

amount of additional labor incurred by astronomical, photo- 
metrical, and other observations, which arc partly undertaken 
with the view to assist Mr. Ellery, the astronomer of the 
colony, in his important and useful labors. • 

It only devolves upon me to add, that with two assistants 
I am at present keeping this extensive system of observation 
going, which certainly cannot be done without considerable 
self-denial from the parties concerned therein. 

In conclusion, let mc express a hope that the Institution 
we have called into existence may continue to flourish, and 
that its labours may be replete with results of the highest 
value to science and the happiness of mankind. 

October 20th, 1858. 

Note. — Since the time this paper was first read, the collection of instru- 
ments of the Observatory has received some valuable additions, namely — a 
self-registering anemometer, on Oesler's construction, was put up in one of the 
upper rooms of the dwelling house, and will greatly add to the completeness 
of the meteorological observations ; besides this, I may state that an ar- 
rangement has been made to connect a clock in the telegraphic room with 
the absolute and horary house, by electric currents, whereby signals are 
given, rectifying the time of registration as well as greatly facilitating the 
obtaining of simultaneous readings in the horary and absolute houses. 


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Index of Plants 

ZODIACAL LIGHT.— August, 1858. 

August 4th, 7 h. p.m. — Very distinct. 
August 31st, 7 h. p.m. — Not very well defined. 

Whenever the sky was obscure, the Zodiacal Light was 
visible ; but it was particularly well defined on the 2nd, 3rd, 
and 4th of August, so as to admit of ascertaining the position; 
and chiefly the southern edge was well defined, while the 
point and northern edge were less distinctly visible. 

On the 3rd the following positions were taken : — 


South Edge. 

North Edge. 






10 - 5 South Declination. 


14" South Declination. 

5 - South Declination. 


15 "0 South Declination. 

4 - South Declination. 


15'0 South Declination. 

2 - South Declination. 


15'0 South Declination. 

20 North Declination. 


16 - South Declination. 

8'0 North Decimation. 

The point was near Sproa apparently in A.R. 203°. 

George Neumayer. 

Flagstaff Observatory, September, 1858. 

Art. XIII. — Index of the Plants described in the Transactions 
of the Victorian Institute, of the Philosophical Society, 
and the Philosophical Institute of Victoria. By Dr. 
Ferdinand Mueller. 

The following abbreviations have been adopted, viz. : — 
P.S. for Transactions of the Philosophical Society of Victoria. 
V.I. for Transactions of the Victorian Institute. 
P.I. for Transactions of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria. 

Abutilon Behrianum, octocarpum, P.S., i. 13 

Acacia tenuifolia, Wilhelmiana, P.S., i. 37 

Agrostis gelida, nivalis, V.I., 43 

Ammannia Australasica, P.S., i. 41 ; crinipes, P.I., iii. 49 

Angianthus brachypappus, P.S., i. 44 

Anisacantha bicuspis, kentropsidea, V.I., 133 ; quinquecus- 

pis, V.I., 134; tricuspis, V.I., 133 
Antennaria nubigena, P.S., i. 45 ; uniceps, P.S., i. 105 
Anthocercis angustifolia, P.S., i. 21 ; myosotidea, P.S., i. 20 

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described in the Transactions. 115 

Aristida Behriana, contorta, V.I., 44 

Arytera divaricata, P.I., iii. 25; foveolata, P.I., iii. 24; 

semiglauca, P.I V iii. 25 
Astelia psychrocharis, V.I., 135 
Asterolasia chorilsenoides, V.I., 116; phebalioides, P.S., 

i. 10; trymalioides, P.S., i. 11 
Atriplex inflatum, P.I., ii. 75; leptocarpum, P.I., ii. 74; 

rhagodioides, P.I., ii. 74; spongiosum, P.I., ii. 74 
Bauera sessiliflora, P.S., i. 41 
Bauhinia Carroni, P.I., iii. 49; Hookeri, P.I., iii. 51; 

Leichhardtii, P.I., iii. 50 
Bergia tripetala, P. I., ii. 66 
Beyera opaca, P.S., i. 16 

Bidaria erecta, P.I., iii. 59 ; leptophylla, P.I., iii. 60 
Billardiera cymosa, V.I., 29 
Blackwellia brachybotrys, P.I V iii. 48 
Blennodia alpestris, P.S., i. 100 

Blitum atriplicinum, V.I., 133 ; cristatum, P.L, ii. 73 
Boronia algida, P.S., i. 100; clavellifolia, P.S., i. 11; coeru- 

lescens, P.S., i. 11; dentigera, V.I., 32; granulata, 

P.I., ii. 65; veronicea, P.S., i. 11 
Bossisea distichoclada, P.S., i. 39; pbylloclada, P.L, iii. 52 
Brachycome chrysoglossa, P.S., i. 44; leptocarpa, P.S., i. 

43; multicaulis, P.S., i. 43; nivalis, P.S., i. 43; pty- 

chocarpa, P.S., i. 43 
Burtonia subalpina, P.S., i. 39 
Calandrinia uniflora, P.I., iii. 41 
Calotis anthemoides, P.S., i. 44; glandulosa, V.I., 129; 

plumubfera, P.L, iii. 57 ; tropica; P.L, iii. 58 
Caltha introloba, P.S., i. 98 
Calycothrix acbseta, P.I., iii. 43 ; arborescens, P.I., iii. 41 ; 

bracbycbseta, P.L, iii. 42 
Campboromyrtus crenulata, V.I., 123 ; pluriflora, V.I.,, 123 
Canthium coprosmoides, P.L, iii. 47; vaccinifolium, P.L, 

iii. 46 
Capsella antipoda, P.S., i. 34 

Cardamine eustylis, V.I., 114; laciniata, P.S., i. 34 
Carex cephalotes, P.S., i. 110; polyantha, P.S., i. 110 
Carpha nivicola, P.S., i. Ill 
Cassia revomta, V.I., 120 
Celastrus Australis, P.S., i. 41; bilocularis, P.L, iii. 31; 

Cunninghami, P.L, iii. 30 ; dispermus, P.I., iii. 31 
Chenopodium microphyllum, P.L, ii. 74 
Choretrum cbrysanthum, P.S., i. 23 

i 2 

116 Index of Plants 

Chorilsena angustifolia, P.S., i. 10 

Chrysocoryne tenella, V.L, 130 

Cissus acetosa, P.I., iii. 24; Australasica, P.S., i. 8; opaca, 

P.I., iii. 23 
Coleostylis Sonderi, P.S., i. 46 
Colobanthus pulvinatus, P.S., i. 101 
Comesperma, P.S., i. 7 
Coretrostylis Sehulzeuii, P.S., i. 36 
Corrsea decumbens, P.S., i. 30 
Crowea exalata, P.S., i. 11 

Cucumis jucunda, P.I., iii. 45 ; picrocarpa, P.I., iii. 46 
Cucurbita micrantha, P.S., i. 17 
Cupania nervosa, P.I., iii. 27 ; xylocarpa, P.L, iii. 27 
Danthonia robusta, V.I., 44 
Daviesia egena, V.I., 118 
Decaspora Clarkei, P.S., i. 106 
Denbamia heterophylla, P.I., iii. 29; oleaster, P.I., iii. 20; 

pittosporoides, P.I., iii. 30 ; xanthosperma, P.I., iii. 29 
Dichopetalum ranunculaceum, P.S., i. 102 
Dimetopia eriocarpa, V.I., 127 
Diodia reptans, V.I., 128 
Dissocarpus bifloras, P.I., ii. 75 
Dodonsea bursarifolia, P.S., i. 8; deflexa, P.S., i. 8; hexan- 

dra, V.I., 117; procumbens, P.S., i. 8 
Drosera angustifolia, P.S., i. 7 
Duttonia gibbifolia, V.I., 41 
Eadesia antbocercidea, P.I., ii. 72 
Echinopsilon anisacanthoides, P.I., ii. 76; sclerolsenoides, 

P.I., ii.75 
Ebrbarta uniglumis, P.S., i. Ill 
Electrosperma Australasicum, P.S., i. 24 
Encbylsena villosa, P.I., ii. 76 

Erigeron ambiguum, P.I., iii. 58; conyzoides, P.S., i. 105 
Eriostemon Hillebrandii, P.S., i. 10; lancifolius V.I., 32; 

microphyllus, P.S., i. 99; trachypbyllus, P.S., i. 99 
Erythroxylon Australe, P.I., iii. 22 
Eucalyptus Bebriana, V.I., 34 ; cosmophylla, V.I., 32 ; cos- 

tata, V.I., 33 ; fasciculosa, V.I., 34 ; gracilis, V.I., 35 ; 

largiflorens, V.I., 34; Leucoxylon, V.I., 33; santalifo- 

lia, V.I., 35 
Eucbilus cuspidatus, P.I., ii. 68 
Euphrasia alsa, P.S., i. 107 
Eurybia conocephala, V.I., 36 
Eutaxia sparsifolia, V.I., 118 

described in the Transactions. 117 

Exocarpus pendula, V.I., 42 

Galium geminifolium, V.I., 127 

Geum renifolium, P.I., ii. 66 

Gingidium glaciale, P.S., i. 103; simplicifolium, P.S., i. 104 

Goodenia amplexans, P.I., ii. 70 ; glauca, V.I., 40; teucrii- 

folia, P.I., ii. 70 
Greevesia cleisocalyse, V.I., 115 
Grevillea confertifolia, P.S., i. 22; dimorpha, P.S., i. 21; 

Hilliana, P.I., ii. 72; lobata, P.S., i. 22; Miqueliana, 

V.I., 132; peterosperma, P.S., i. 22; Victoria, P.S., 

i. 107 
Haeckeria cassiniseformis, P.S., i. 45; ozothamnoides, P.S., 

i. 45 
Haloragis acutangula, V.I., 125 
Harpulia Hillii, P.I., iii. 27; pendula, P.I., iii. 26 
Hedycaria Pseudomorus, P.I V ii. 63 
Helichrysum adenophorum, V.I., 38 
Heliotropium lacunarium, P.S., i. 20 
Helipterum exiguum, V.I., 39 ; prsecox, V.I., 38 
Hierocldoe submutica, V.I., 48 
Howittia trilocularis, V.I., 116 

Hydrocotyle geranifolia, V.I., 126; pterocarpa, V.I., 126 
Hyppocratea barbata, P.I., iii. 23 
Ixiolaena supina, V.I., 37 

Kocbia oppositifolia, V.I., 134 ; sedifolia, V.I., 134 
Kunzea ericifolia, V.I., 123; peduncularis, V.I., 124; pomi- 

fera, V.I., 124 
Lasiopetalum Behrii, P.S., i. 36; Wilhelmii, P.I., ii. 65 
Laurentia platycalyx, V.I., 39 

Lepidium ambiguum, P.S., i. 34; monoplocoides, P.S., i. 35 
Leptocyamus sericeus, P.S., i. 40 
Leptomeria pungens, V.I., 41 
Leptospermum brevipes, V.I V 125 
Leucopogon Maccrai, P.S., i. 106 
Lhotzkya genethylloides, P.S., i. 16 
Limnanthemum crenatum, P.S., i. 17 
Lorantbus canus, V.I., 128 
Lysicarpus tenuifolius, P.I., ii. 68 
Macadamia ternifolia, P.I., ii. 72 
Marianthus bignoniaceus, P.S., i. 6 
Melaleuca minutifolia, P.I., iii. 44; symphyocarpaj P.I., iii. 

Melodinus acutiflorus, P.I., ii. 71 
Methorium integrifolium, P.I., iii. 40 

118 Index of Plants 

Mimulus debilis, P.I., iii. 62 

Mirbelia aotoides, P.I., iii. 53 

Mitrasacme distylis, P.S., i. 20 

Mniaram singuliflorum, P.S., i. 13 

Mollugo Novo-Hollandica, P.S., i. 14 

Monoploca leptopetala, P.S., i. 35 

Myosuras Australis, P.S., i. 6 

Myriopbyllum dicoccum, P.I., iii. 40 

Nephebum tomentosum, P.I., ii. 64 

Notelaea venosa, V.I., 131. 

Octoclinis Macleayana, P.I., ii. 20, 22 

Oreobobis disticbus, P.S V i. 109 

Orites lancifolia, P.S V i. 108 

Osteocarpum salsuginosum, P.I., ii. 77 

Oxylobium alpestre, P.S., i. 38; procumbens, P.S., i. 37 

Ozothamnus decurrens, P.I,j iii. 59 

Paederota densifoba, P.S., i. 107 

Panax angustifblius, P.S V i. 42; dendroides, P.S V i. 43; 

elegans, P.I., ii. 68 
Panicum ammopbilnm, V.I V 46 ; caenicolum, V.I., 45 ; con- 

vallium, V.I., 46; lacunarium, V.I., 47; melantbunx, 

V.I., 47; prolutum, V.I., 46 
Parsonsia ventricosa, P.I V ii. 71 
Pelonastes tillaeacea, V.I., 125 
PhebaHum asteriscopborum, V.I., 31 ; ovatifobum, VJL, 99 ; 

ozotbamnoides, V.I., 31 ; pbybcifobum, V.I., 32 ; podo- 

carpoides, V.I., 31 ; sediflorum, V.I., 30 
PboHdia divaricata, P.S., i. 46; polyclada, P.S., i. 47 
Pbyllantbus Fuernrobrii, P.S., i. 15; lacunarius, P.S., i. 14; 

tracbyspemms, P.S., i. 14 
Pbyllota pleurandroides, P.S., i. 38 
Pleuropappns pbyllocalymmeus, V.I., 37 
Pluchea fibfoba, P.I., iii. 56 

Poa brizocbloa, V.I V 45 ; ramigera, V.I., 45 ; syrtica, V.I., 45 
Polygala veronicea, V.I., 117 

Polygonum dicbne, P.S., i. 23; platycladum, P.I., ii. 73 
Polypompbolyx exigua, P.S., ii. 50 
Pozoa cuneifobaj P.S., i. 103; fragosea, P.S., i. 102 
Prostantbera coccinea, P.S., i. 48; eurybioides, P.S., i. 48; 

spinosa, P.S., i. 48 
Pseudantbus ovalifobus, P.I., ii. 66 
Psoralea adscendens, P.S., i. 40; balsamica, P. I., iii. 55; 

leucantha, P.I., iii. 54; parva, P.S., i. 40; pustulata, 

P.I., iii. 54 

described in the Transactions. 119 

Pultenaea Benthami, P.S., i. 38; canaliculata, V.I., 119; 

densifolia, V.I., 119; fuscata, V.I., 119 
Ranunculus anemoneus, P.S., i. 97; MiUani, P.S., i. 97. 
Rhagodia nitrariacea, P.I., ii. 73 
Rubus Hillii, P.I., ii. 67 ; Moorei, P.L, ii. 67 
Rutidosis leiolepis, V.I V 131 
Sambucus xantnocarpa, P.S., i. 42 
Santalum persicarium, V.I., 41 

Scirpus leptocarpus, P.S., i. 109; polystachyus,, P.S., i. 108 
Sclerochlamys brachyptera, P.I., ii. 76 
Sebaea albidiflora, P.S., i. 46 
Senecio drymophilus, P.I., ii. 69 ; helichrysoides, V.I., 39 ; 

papillosus, P.I.j ii. 69 ; primulifolius, P.I., ii. 69 ; vagus, 

P.S., i. 46 
Sesbania Australis, V.I., 36 

Seseli algens, P.S., i. 104; Harveyanum, P.S., i. 104 
Sida humillima, P.S., i. 12; intricata, P.S V i. 12 
Sisymbrium cardaminoides, P.S., i. 34; trisectum, V.I., 114 
Solanum laciniatum, P.S., i. 18; oligacanthum, P.S., i. 19; 

pulchellum, P.S., i. 18; simile, P.S., i. 19; Stuarti- 

anum, P.S., i. 19 ; vescum, V.I., 69 
Spanoghoa connata, P.I., iii. 26; nephelioides, P.I., iii. 25 
Stackhousia pulvinaris, P.S., i. 101. 
Stenopetalum sphserocarpuni, P.S., i. 35 
Stipa aristiglumis, V.I., 43 
Stylidium soboliferum, V.I V 131 
Thomasia petalocalyx, P.S., i. 35 
Trachycaryon Cunninghami, P.S., i. 15 ; Hookeri, P.S., i. 16; 

Klotzschii, P.S., i. 15 
Tribulus, acanthococcus, P.S., i. 9 
Triglochin nanum, V.I., 135 

Trineuron nivigenum, P.S., i. 105 ; scapigerum, P.I., ii. 70 
Tripterococcus spathulatus, P.S., i. 56 
Trymalium bifidum, V.I., 121 ; bilobatum, V.I., 121 ; halma- 

turorum, V.I., 121 ; phlebophyllum, V.I., 120 ; spathu- 

latum, V.I.j 122 ; subochreatum, V.L, 122 
Utricularia fulva, P.I., iii. 63 
Vandellia clausa, P.I., iii. 60 ; lobelioides, P.I., iii. 61 ; plan- 

taginea, P.I., iii. 62 
Velleya connata, P.S., i. 18 
Veronica Hillebrandii, P.S., i. 49 
Verticordia Wilhelmii, V.I., 122 
Westringia grevillina, P.S., i. 49; senifolia, P.S., i. 49; 

violacea, P.S., i. 49 

120 Index of Plants, fyc. 

Wilkiea calyptrocalyx, P.I., ii. 64 
Xanthoxylon brachyacanthum, P.I., ii. 65 
Xerotes dura, V.I., 42 ; juncea, V.I., 135 
Ximenia exarmata, P.I., iii. 22 
Zornia chaetophora, P.I., iii. 56 
Zygophyllum glaucum, V.I., 29 



Anniversary Meeting op the Philosophical Institute 
of Victoria. 

Wednesday, Zrd March, 1858. 
The Hon. Captain Clarke, R.E., President, in the Chair. 

The object of the meeting, as stated in the notice paper, was to 
elect the officers of the Institute for the ensuing year. 

The Hon. Secretary read a recommendation from the Council of 
the Institute, to the following effect, viz. : That the six members of 
Council elected at this anniversary meeting, having the least number 
of votes, shall retire at the anniversary meeting in 1859, in order that 
rule 10 may then come into operation. 

This was put forward as a motion, by Professor Wilson, seconded 
by Mr. Clarson, and carried. 

The Hon. Captain Clarke, RE., then thanked the Institute for the 
confidence reposed in him, as President, since the formation of the 
Institute, and stated his desire to retire, in order that a system of 
annual election of the President might be established. He considered 
that an annual change of the presidentship would be advantageous to 
the Institute. 

An unanimous vote of thanks was passed to Captain Clarke for his 
long and valuable services. 

A. K. Smith, Esq., proposed the Hon. Sir William Foster Stawell, 
as President for the ensuing year. This was seconded by Sizar 
Elliot, Esq. The Eev. Mr. Bleasdale proposed Professor Wilson, 
seconded by Dr. Eades. Professor Wilson proposed Dr. Ferdinand 
Mueller, seconded by Mr. Blandowski. 

A ballot took place, and scrutineers were appointed. The result 

Votes for Sir Wm. Foster Stawell 28 

„ „ Professor Wilson ... ... 15 

Sir Wm. Foster Stawell was declared duly elected. 

Fred. Acheson, Esq., proposed Clement Hodgkinson, Esq., C.E., 
as a Vice-President of the Institute. This was seconded by A. K. 
Smith, Esq., C.E. 

ii Proceedings, doc. 

Mr. Rawlinson proposed Dr. Iffla ; seconded by Dr. Mackenna, 
Dr. Gilbee proposed Professor Wilson ; seconded by Mr. Blan- 

Dr. Macadam proposed Dr. Ferdinand Mueller ; seconded by Mr. 

A ballot took place, and scrutineers, viz. — Messrs. Acheson and 
Clarson — were appointed. The results were — 

Dr. Mueller 36 

Mr. Hodgkinson 20 

Professor Wilson ... ... ... 18 

Dr. Iffla 14 

Dr. Mueller and Mr. Hodgkinson were declared duly elected. 
Professor Irving and Dr. Iffla were nominated for the office of 

Dr. Iffla requested Ms name to be withdrawn, in consideration of 
Professor living's past services, which was granted. 

Professor Irving was then elected treasurer for the ensuing year. 
Dr. Wilkie proposed that John Macadam, Esq., M.D., be appointed 
Secretary to the Institute for the ensuing year. 

This was seconded by Professor Wilson, and unanimously agreed 

The Secretary having distributed lists of the attendance of the 
Members of Council for the past year, as also printed lists of the 
members of the Institute, as at 31st December, 1857, amounting to 
two hundred and thirty-two ; twelve Members of Council for the 
year 1858 were then elected by ballot, the six members having the 
highest number of votes to remain in office two years. 

Professor Irving and Dr. Macadam were appointed scrutineers. 
The results were — 

Professor Wilson ... ... ... 33 

Dr. Eades 32 

Dr. Iffla 30 

Frederick Acheson, Esq., C.E 30 

Dr. Mackenna ... ... ... ... 28 

Dr. Wilkie 26 

Rev. Mr. Bleasdale 24 

Hon. Andrew Clarke, RE 23 

William Blandowski, Esq. ... ... 23 

Thomas E. Rawlinson, Esq., C.E. ... 17 

Dr. Gilbee 16 

Professor Hearn ) 

John Millar, Esq., C.E. V 14 

A. K. Smith, Esq. \ 

The latter three gentlemen then drew lots for membership, when 
the lot fell to Professor Hearn, who, with the former eleven, were 
declared duly elected as Members of Council. 
The Institute then separated. 

Proceedings, &c. iii 

Ordinary Meeting of the Institute. 

2ith March, 1858. 

The Treasurer, Professor Irving, in the Chair. 

The minutes of the anniversary meeting were read and confirmed. 
Members, present for the first time, were introduced to the Institute 
by the Chairman. 

The Secretary read the names of twenty-three candidates for ordi- 
nary membership, and the name of one gentleman for honorary 
membership, to be balloted for at the next meeting. 

Richard Gibson, Esq., Road Engineer, Tarraville, was duly elected 
an ordinary member of the Institute. 

Moved by Dr. Macadam, " That this meeting approves of the act 
of the Council in suspending Rule IX., so far as regards the date 
for holding the annual dinner the last week in March, during which, 
according to the rule, it ought to be kept, being Passion week. 

Seconded by John Millar, Esq., C.E.. and carried unanimously. 

The Secretary read a letter from Captain Timins, private secre- 
tary, communicating the circumstance that the day fixed by the 
Council for the annual dinner would be inconvenient for his Excel- 
lency and several others who desired to be present, and soliciting, if 
equally convenient for the Council, the appointment of another day. 

The Secretary was instructed to make the necessary arrangements. 

The Secretaiy read letters from the Hon. Sir William Foster Sta- 
well and Dr. Mueller, respectively thanking the Institiite for the 
honor done them in the recent elections. 

On the Secretaiy announcing a ballot for two vacancies in the 
Council, caused by the resignations of Professor Wilson and the Rev. 
Mr. Bleasdale, 

Mr. Farewell drew attention to the Rule XIIL, and considered that 
the election was premature, as the resignations should be first accepted. 

Mr. Clarson moved, " That the order of the day for a ballot be 
postponed till the next meeting, and that this meeting take into con- 
sideration the letters of resignation received." 

Seeonded by Dr. Mackenna, and carried. 

The letters of resignation given hi by Professor Wilson and the 
Rev. Mr. Bleasdale were read by the Secretary. 

The Secretary intimated the receipt of a second letter from the 
Rev. Mr. Bleasdale, addressed to the Institute through the President. 

Lieut. Amsinck moved " That the letter be not read." Seconded 
by Frederick Acheson, Esq. 

Dr. Knaggs moved, as an amendment, " That the letter be read." 
Seconded by Dr. Wilkie. 

The amendment was carried and the letter addressed by the Rev. 
Mr. Bleasdale to the President, was read by the Secretary. 

Lieut. Amsinck, R.N., moved " That the letter read, addressed to 
the President, be not entered on the minutes of this meeting." 

a 2 

iv Proceedings, <$cc. 

This was seconded by Dr. Wilkie, and carried. 

A discussion ensued as to the reasons assigned for resignation, and 
Mr. Blandowski requested that a committee of enquiry should be 

Mr. Acheson affirmed that the dissatisfaction was confined to the 
two Members of Council resigning* 

Mr. Eawlinson denied this, and stated that the opinions expressed 
in the letters of resignation were shared in by other Members of 

Mr. Schultz moved, " That a committee of five non-Members of 
Council be appointed, with power to take evidence, for the purpose of 
inquiring into the circumstances connected with the resignations of 
Professor Wilson and the Kev. J. I. Bleasdale, and to report to the 
next ordinary meeting." 

This was seconded by Dr. Wilkie. 

Dr. Knaggs moved, as an amendment, " That this meeting pass on 
to the next order of the day." 

Seconded by John Millar, Esq., C.E. 

The amendment was put and lost, the votes being 13 to 10. The 
motion was carried, the votes being 1 3 to 6. 

Mr. Schultz moved as a committee, three of whom to form a 
quorum : Lieutenant Amsinck, Arthur Dobree, Esq., G. S. Hough, 
Esq., Sizar Elliot, sen., Esq., and Dr. Knaggs. 

This was seconded by Mr. Acheson. 

Mr. Farewell moved, as an amendment, " That the committee be 
appointed by ballot." 

This was seconded by Dr. Knaggs, and, when put, was carried, the 
votes being 11 to 10. 

A ballot was then held, when the gentlemen having the highest 
number of votes were — 

Dr. Knaggs 21 votes. 

W. Schultz, Esq. 19 

Lieutenant Amsinck ... ... 14 

Sizar Elliot, Esq., sen 14 

John Millar, Esq., C.E 10 

Charles Farewell, Esq 10 

Mr. Farewell retired in favor of Mr. John Millar. 

Dr. Macadam moved, " That the Secretary be instructed to supply 
the committee with all documents, &c, bearing upon the subject 
under investigation." 

This was seconded by Dr. Mackenna, and carried. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, viz. : 
The Sydney Magazine of Science and Art from August to December, 

* Mr. Acheson was absent during the confirmation of the minutes, and states that 
his remarks were to the effect : " That as only two members of Council had resigned, 
consequently, the remaining members did not consider it incumbent on them to do so." — 
J. M., Ed. 

Proceedings, &c. v 

inclusive — by the publishers. The Government Gazette from 1st 
January, 1857, till date — by the Government. " Meteorological 
Observations for South Australia" — by Charles Todd, Esq. " Meteor- 
ological Observations for Victoria, for the Quarter ending 30th 
December, 1857, and Monthly Table of the same for January, 1858" — 
by the Government. "Meteorological Tables for November and 
December, 1857, and for January, 1858" — by the Eoyal Society of 
Tasmania. Parts 3 and 4, vol. XIII., of the " Quarterly Journal 
of the Geological Society of London," with copy of the President's 
Address, delivered at the anniversary meeting for 1857, and three 
Abstracts of Proceedings — by the Geological Society of London. 
One case Minerals, &c, from the Zoological Society of Berlin. 

A paper was read by Dr. Ludwig Becker, entitled " Some Facts 
determining the Bate of Upheaval of the South Coast of the Austra- 
lian Continent." [Vide "Transactions."] 

The Institute then separated. 

Uth April, 1858. 
Ordinary Meeting. 

The President, Sir Wm. Foster Stawell, in the Chair. 

The minutes of the previous ordinary meeting were read and con- 
firmed, and new members, present for the first time, were introduced, 
by the President, to the Institute. 

The Secretary read the names of fourteen candidates for ordinary 
membership, to be ballotted for at the next meeting. 

The following gentlemen were duly elected by ballot, ordinary 
members of the Institute — Drs. Eades and Iffla acting as scrutineers. 

Capt. J. E. N. Bull, Besident Warden, Castlemaine. 

J. A. Panton, Esq., Besident Warden, Sandhurst. 

W. H. Wright, Esq., Wimmera. 

Thomas Higinbotham, Esq., C. E, Inspector-General of Boads. 

Thomas William I'erson, Esq., Professor of Music, Geelong. 

Bobert Bowland Morgan, Esq., Office of Boads and Bridges. 

Thomas John Forbes, Esq., Manager of Deeds Department, Crown 
Lands Office. 

Thos. Gilfillan, Esq., Artist, Melbourne. 

Samuel H. Merritt, Esq., Chief Draughtsman, Office of Public Works. 

Alfred Lewis Smith, Esq., Architect, Albert Street. 

James B. Motherwell, Esq., M.D., Collins-street east. 

Wm. L. Chalmers, Esq., Manager of the Northern Assurance Co. 

C. 0. Helm, Esq., B.A., Oxon, Geelong Grammar School. 

Charles John Braithwaite, Esq., C.E., Office of Boads and Bridges. 

Wm. Thomson, Esq., M.B.C.S. Edin., South Yarra. 

Christopher D'Oyley Hay Aplin, Esq., Assistant Geological 

Wm. Findlay Main, Esq., Head Master National School, Castlemaine. 

vi Proceedings, &c. 

James Purves, Esq., Melbourne. 

Ebenezer Syme, Esq., Editor of the "Age." 

J. D. S. Heron, Esq., Warden, Fryerstown. 

Edward Stone Parker, Esq., Mount Franklin. 

John Scott Hamilton, Esq., 129 Bourke-street west. 

A. C. Gregory, Esq., the Australian Explorer, was unanimously 
elected an honorary member of the Institute. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contribution, viz., 
several numbers of the "Illustrated Journal of Australasia," for- 
warded by the publishers. 

Dr. Knaggs, as Chairman of the Committee appointed by the pre- 
vious meeting, with power to take evidence to inquire into the cir- 
cumstances connected with the resignations of Professor Wilson and 
the Eev. J. I. Bleasdale, as Members of Council, brought forward 
and read the report of the Committee. 

Lieut. Henry Amsinck moved — -"That the report be received." 

This was seconded by Sizar Elliot, Esq. 

The Hon. Capt. Clarke, R.E., moved, as an amendment — "That 
the report be not received." 

This was seconded by John Millar, Esq., C.E. 

A lengthened discussion ensued, in which the proposers and se- 
conders of the motion and amendment, and Professors Wilson and 
Irving, Drs. Eades, Maclean, Knaggs, Mackenna, and Macadam, the 
Rev. Mr. Bleasdale, and Messrs. Schultz and Blandowski, as also the 
Hon. the President took part. 

On the amendment being put, it was carried by about forty votes 
to five. 

A. K. Smith, Esq., C.E., then moved — " That the resignation of 
the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale and Professor Wilson be not accepted." This 
was seconded by Dr. Robertson, and carried unanimously. 

Dr. Macadam moved — " That, from the lateness of the hour, the 
reading of papers by Messrs. Smith and Bosisto be postponed till the 
next ordinary meeting ; these papers then to take precedence. 

This was seconded by Dr. Iffla, and carried. 

The Institute then separated. 

5th May, 1858. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

The President Sir W. F. Stawell in the chair. His Excellency Sir 
H. Barkly, K.C.B., was present. 

The minutes of the ordinary meeting, held on the 14th April, 1858, 
were read and confirmed, and members present, for the first time, 
were introduced to the Institute by the Chairman. 

The Secretary read the names of nine candidates for membership, 
to be ballotted for at the next ordinary meeting. 

■Proceedings, dec. * vii 

The following gentlemen were duly elected ordinary members of 
the Institute, viz. : — 

General Macarthur, C.B., Commander of the Forces, &c. 

The Hon. H. S. Chapman, Esq., M.L.A., Attorney-General. 

Charles Whybrow Ligar, Esq., Surveyor-General. 

Patrick Higgins, Esq., Contractor, Moonee Ponds. 

George H. Ryder, Esq., Charles-street, Richmond. 

A. Childs, Esq., Melbourne. 

J. C. Candler, Esq., District Coroner. 

Joseph Wilkie, Esq., M.L.A, Melbourne. 

Rev. James Nish, Presbyterian Minister, Sandhurst. 

Capt. Ross, R.N., Marine Surveyor. 

Rev. Geo. Mackie, Presbyterian Minister, Lake- Learmonth. 

Rev. J. E. Bromby, D.D., Principal of the Church of England 
Grammar School, Melbourne. 

Rev. J. Swanton Waugh, Wesleyan Minister, Church-st., Richmond. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, 
viz.: Vols. I. and II. (for 1856 and 7) of the "Journal of the Pro- 
ceedings of the Linnsean Society of London," also the "Anniversary 
Addresses" for 1855, 1856, and 1857, with the list of members, for- 
warded to the Institute by the Linnsean Society. The Secretary was 
instructed to acknowledge the receipt of these contributions, with 
thanks, the Hon. the President remarking that the recognition of the 
Institute by so old and important a society would be most gratifying 
to the members generally. 

Alexander Kennedy Smith, Esq., C.E., read a paper entitled "On 
the Reclamation and Cultivation of Batman's Swamp." [Vide 
" Transactions."] 

A discussion ensued, in which Mr. Stevenson, Dr. Macadam, and 
others took part. The paper was illustrated by specimens and diagrams. 

Joseph Bosisto, Esq., read a paper " On the Preservation and the 
Cocoons of the Hirudo medicinalis (Leech)." [ Vide "Transactions."] 

This paper was illustrated by living specimens of the leech and cocoons. 

A discussion ensued, in which his Excellency, Dr. Eades, Mr. 
Elliot, and Dr. Macadam took part. 

Dr. Mueller laid upon the table, with explanatory remarks, the first 
number of his " Fragmenta Phytographise Australia," as a contribu- 
tion to the Institute. 

The Institute then separated. 

26th May, 1858. 
Ordinary Meeting. 
Sir Wm. Foster Stawell, President, in the Chair. 
The minutes of the previous ordinary meeting of the Institute were 
read and confirmed, and several recently elected members were intro- 
duced to the Institute by the Chairman. 

viii Proceedings, &c. 

The Secretary read the names of seven candidates for membership, 
to be ballotted for at the succeeding ordinary meeting. 

The follo"wing gentlemen were elected ordinary members of the 
Institute, by ballot, viz. : — 

The Hon. John Hood, Esq., M.L C, Melbourne. 

Cadogan Campbell, Esq., C.E., Engineer to the Geelong and 

Melbourne Eailway. 
John Eandall Pascoe, Esq., J.P., &c, Melbourne. 
George Francis, Esq., C.E., 72 Lonsdale-street, Melbourne. 
Rev. Julian Edmund Woods, Penola, South Australia. 
John McCutcheon, Esq., Wesleyan School, Richmond. 
Henry Bolton, Esq., C.E., St. Kilda. 

Richard Manuel, Esq., C.E., Mining Surveyor, John-street, 
The Secretary announced the publication of Part II., Vol. II., of 
the Transactions of the Institute for 1857, and the members present 
were suppbed with copies of the same. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions from 
the Rev. Wm. Scott, M.A., Astronomer of New South Wales, viz., 
the Meteorological Table for March, of New South Wales, as also the 
Monthly Abstract for that month. 

Dr. Wilkie, as chairman of the Exploration Committee, read the 
second report of that committee. The report stated that there was 
a probabihty that the enterprise would be entered upon, with the aid 
of the Government, when the explorations now in progress, iinder 
Messrs. Babbage and Gregory, bad been completed. The report fur- 
ther held out the hope that Mr. Gregory might be prevailed upon to 
undertake the command of the Victorian expedition. 

Dr. Wilkie moved, and Dr. Iffla seconded, the adoption of the re- 
port read, which was unanimously carried. [Vide "Reports of Com- 

John Cairns, Esq., exhibited specimens of the Water Yielding 
Tree of tbe Mallee, aud explained the mode adopted by the natives 
for extracting water from its roots. Mr. Cairns exhibited, also, a 
specimen of the water so obtained. The exhibitor, in his remarks, 
further referred to a variety of cotton, obtained from the root of a 
species of bulrush, found in swamps and lagoons in the interior. He 
also exhibited specimens of the Spear Grass. [ Vide ' ' Transaction's. ' '] 
A discussion followed, in which Dr. Mueller, Mr. Blandowski, and 
others took part. 

Dr. Macadam undertook to conduct an analysis of the water exhi- 
bited, and made some remarks on the cotton fibre, with reference to 
its probable use in paper making. He stated that the scarcity of 
suitable materials for this purpose was becoming very great in Eng- 
land, on account of the Americans exhausting the rag-exporting local- 
ities in the Mediterranean. From the importance of an available 
fibre, Dr. Macadam suggested that Mr. Cairns should bring his ob- 

Proceedings, <Scc. ix 

servations before the Institute in a more permanent form. This 
suggestion was supported by Sizar Elliot, Esq., approved of by the 
members, and agreed to by Mr. Cairns. 

Dr. Mueller exhibited and explained some specimens of new Aus- 
tralian plants. [Vide "Transactions."] 

The Institute then separated. 

16th June, 1858. 
Ordinary Meeting. 
Sir Wm. F. Stawell, President, in the Chair. 
The minutes of the ordinary meeting of the Institute, held on the 
2Gth May, were read by the Secretary and confirmed. 

Several recently elected members were introduced to the meeting 
by the Chairman. 

The names of six candidates for ordinary membership were read 
by the Secretary. 

The following gentlemen were duly elected ordinary members of 
the Institute, viz. : — 

The Rev. Irving Hetherington, minister of the Scotch Church, 

Collins-st. east. 
John Jamieson, Esq., merchant, Melbourne. 
Dr. Beaney, Russell-st. 
Rev. James Ballantyne, Melbourne. 
Joseph Brady, Esq., C.E., 41 William-street 
Rev. William Jarrett, Brunswick. 
Rev. Henry Higginson, 3 Wellington-terrace. 
Professors Wilson and Irving officiated as scrutineers of the ballot. 
The Secretary laid upon the table the following contribution, 
viz. : — Meteorological Tables for Februaiy, March, and April, 1858, 
for Tasmania — by the Royal Society of Tasmania. 

On the motion of Lieut. Amsinck, R.N., the thanks of the society 
were voted to the Royal Society of Tasmania for their present con- 

Sizar Elliot, Esq., inquired whether the various contributions 
were available to the members. 

The Secretary stated that as yet the Institute was not possessed of 
suitable accommodation for rendering them accessible, but that the 
subject of the necessary accommodation was engaging the attention 
of the Council. 

John Cairns, Esq., then read, as a paper, the substance of his com- 
munication given at the previous ordinary meeting of the Institute, 
and which he had then been requested to present in a more perma- 
nent form. 

Professor Wilson exhibited a large model of the great four-feet 
reflector, which it is proposed to erect in Victoria for examining the 
nebulas of the Southern hemisphere. The model had been con- 
structed at the University, under his direction, from a drawing sent 

to Mm by the Kev. T. E. Robinson, D.D., Armagh Observatory. 
Before proceeding to describe the model, Professor Wilson gave a 
brief account of the principle of the reflecting telescope, as contrasted 
with the refracting telescope, with a description of the various con- 
structions used since the time of Newton. After stating that a specu- 
lum afforded only as much light as a lens of about three-fourths its 
aperture, he went on to say, that the impossibility of procuring glass 
of a sufficiently uniform texture rendered it necessary to make use of 
reflecting telescopes when any very great optical power was required. 
The construction which it was proposed to use in this telescope was 
that recommended by Cassegrain, with this important improvement, 
that the small convex mirror was formed of an achromatic combina- 
tion of lenses coated with a deposit of pure silver. It was found 
that this reflected 86 per cent, of the incident bight, whilst speculum 
metal reflected only 62 per cent. The speculum, which was to be of 
a clear aperture of four feet, would weigh about one ton, and the 
whole moving part of the instrument would weigh something more 
than eight tons. The mode of mounting adopted, so as to secure at 
the same time ease of motion and perfect steadiness, formed the 
most beautiful part of the contrivance. The modes of mounting 
hitherto used might be divided into two classes, which might be 
termed the English and the German modes of mounting. In the 
English mounting the polar axis was longer than the telescope, and sup- 
ported at both ends. This had the disadvantage that the polar axis, 
from its great length, was deficient in rigidity, and also that the view of 
the sub-polar portion of the heavens was partially interrupted by the 
support of the upper end of the axis. In the German mode of 
mounting the polar axis was supported only below the centre of 
gravity of the telescope, and consequently any flexure would have a 
greater tendency to produce an angular derangement of the instru- 
ment than a much greater flexure in the English mode. The mode 
proposed for this instrument combined the advantages of both. The 
polar axis was very short, and was supported at both ends, while the 
telescope commanded an uninterrupted view of every portion of the 
heavens. The weights of the various parts, also, were so counter- 
poised that there would be very little wear of the various bearing 
Y's from friction. Though the moving parts weighed more than 
eight tons, it was calculated that a force . of twenty pounds, acting at 
a radius of five feet, would be sufficient to move the instrument in 
right ascension. The telescope was to be provided with a clock-work 
movement, so that when it was once directed to a star, the star would 
remain in the field of view without further exertion on the part of the 
observer. It is impossible to render the construction intelligible 
without diagrams. Professor Wilson, however, stated that he should 
be happy to explain it to any person taking an interest in it, who 
would pay the model a visit at the University. Professor Wilson 
read the tender of Mr. Grubb, of Dublin, offering to construct this 

Proceedings, &c. xi 

instrument for £4200. Professor Wilson took that opportunity 
again to disclaim any desire of obtaining any appointment in connec- 
tion with the Observatoiy. His duties at the University would not 
allow him to hold such an appointment. He was anxious for the 
accomplishment of a great scientific object, and would, as an amateur, 
give every assistance in his power to start it and carry it on. 

The Hon. the President concurred heartily in the object contem- 
plated, and considered that the Institute should endeavour to secure 
the co-operation of the Government as early as possible. 

Lieut. Amsinck, Dr. Becker, Messrs. Rawlinson, Hough, and 
others, took part in an animated discussion which ensued, the desira- 
bility of the object being affirmed by the members generally. 

Dr. Iffla exhibited specimens of submarine cable employed in 
telegraphic communication. Those shown were portions of the cable 
constructed for the Atlantic, and that for communication between 
England and the Hague. 

On account of the lateness of the hour, the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale's 
paper on " Sections in the Institute" was postponed until the next 
ordinary meeting, as also the exhibition by the Secretary, on behalf 
of Gustav Joachimi, Esq., of Representations of wall Paintings of 
Pompeii and Herculaneum. 

The Institute then separated. 

7th July, 1858. 
Ordinary Meeting. 
Dr. Mueller, Vice-President, in the Chair. 
The minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed. Se- 
veral new members were introduced to the Institute. 

The Secretary read the names of the candidates for membership. 
The following gentlemen were elected as ordinary members (Pro- 
fessor Wilson and Dr. Oillbee acting as scrutineers to the ballot) j — 
Rev. Robert Bowman, Collingwood. 
Peter Henry Smith, Esq., Melbourne. 
James Hemming Webb, Esq., St. Kiida. 

W. C. Cornish, Esq., (Messrs. Cornish and Bruce,) Melbourne. 
John Langlands, Esq., Foundry, Flinders-street. 
Richard A. Passmore, Esq., Melbourne. 
The following contributions were laid upon the table, viz. : — Nos. 
8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 of the "Sydney Magazine of Science and Art," 
presented by the publishers ; Meteorological Observations in South 
Australia, for 1857, also, the monthly tables for Feb. and March, 1858, 
by the South Australian Government; monthly tables of Meteorological 
Observations in Melbourne, for January, February, March, and April, 
1858, by the Government ; and Nos. 1, 2, and 3 of the "Pharma- 
ceutical Journal of Victoria,," by the Victorian Pharmaceutical Society. 
Thanks to the contributors were voted. 

xii Proceedings, <kc. 

The Secretary read a letter from Professor Neumayer, inviting the 
members to visit the Observatory on the Flagstaff-hill, and inspect 
the arrangements for magnetic and other observations. Professor 
Neumayer further offered his services, gratuitously, in carrying out 
any series of observations the Institute might desire. The reading 
of the letter was warmly greeted by the members, and thanks were 
voted to Professor Neumayer. 

The Rev. Mr. Bleasdale read a paper on the establishment of sec- 
tions in the Institute, of which the following is the substance : — 

" In societies whose aims and objects are cognate with, or analo- 
gous to, those of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria, the arrange- 
ment of the members in sections has been found to work well, and to 
have conduced largely to their efficiency. Were it desirable to refer 
to instances of this in Europe, the British Association of Arts might 
be adduced. 

" Numbering as the Philosophical Institute now does, nearly 300 
members, and receiving valuable additions to that number every 
month, I consider that the time has arrived when this Institute 
should introduce the same principle ; and, for the better effecting 
all its important objects, enable the members to distribute and 
arrange themselves in as many sections as shall appear advisable. 

" I deem this the more necessary now, because I firmly believe 
that union is strength, and that, in this instance, the parcelling out 
of the members under such heads as they feel are most congenial to 
their tastes and pursuits, will not only not be division, but the 
attainment of union itself. We shall thus know our available 
strength in any one department. In the course of this paper, which 
I mean to make as brief as possible, it will be my purpose to draw 
attention to this subject, rather than to attempt to submit a complete 
scheme for your adoption. I feel that this is a matter on which the 
Institute should take action, and that I shall be consulting the 
general good by throwing out any suggestions that seem to me likely 
to be of benefit, but leaving the ultimate moulding of the whole to 
the wisdom of the collective body. By adopting this course, I trust 
I shall best secure my main object, viz., to render the Institute as 
efficient as possible, by giving opportunity and direction to the talent 
within it. 

" I consider that there is at present a large amount of talent lying 
dormant, or nearly so, among us. And I do not wonder at it ; 
because it does not at all times fall to the lot of every individual 
member to be able to give sufficient time and attention to work up 
a subject, though he may desire to do so. Now, under the system 
of sections, all this scattered talent, and all these desires, which 
would terminate in the individual's own mind, might, by a little 
judicious management, become valuable property in the hands of a 

Proceedings, die. xiii 

"Among the most important objects now affecting the future 
well-being and practical utility of this Institute, one is the formation 
of a museum of objects, models, specimens, &c. This I conceive 
will be best accomplished by the sections, working as they will each 
with a view to its own particular aims and requirements. The mem- 
bers will then have a direct interest in the collection. 

Thus in a direct way by writing, or collecting, or contributing 
objects and books; or indirectly by countenance and advice; in one 
way or another, the talent, energy, and sympathy of the members 
would be enlisted and drawn out, and turned to practically useful 

" It does not seem to me at all incompatible that the same indi- 
vidual should belong to more than one section ; for it might, and 
very often will happen that the studies and pursuits of the same 
man will embrace the separate objects of two or more sections. For 
example, some members of the sanitary section might be able mem- 
bers in chemistry on one hand, and engineering on the other, whilst 
some of every section might be interested in astronomy, meteorology, 
or microscopic investigation. 

" I will content myself with raising a few starting points, as a 
general idea of the grouping of subjects under sections. I am dis- 
posed to give precedence to the medical section ; embracing all that 
belongs directly to sanitary science, water, air, ventilation, and 
drainage, and statistics. 

" 2. Engineering in all its branches ; mining, and the supply of 
water to the gold-fields. A section devoted to the development of 
the material resources of the colony. 

" 3. Natural philosophy ; and associate with it astronomy and 

" 4 Geography, geology, and paloeontology. 

" 5. Chemistry, botany, and microscopy. 

" 6. Agriculture, horticulture, and natural history. 

" I believe that I am not over-estimating the strength of the Insti- 
tute, when I calculate upon our being able to work the above six 

" Leaving the consideration of the number of members required 
for the formation of a separate section, I would suggest that for the 
present not less than twelve be deemed requisite. 

" It is almost foreign to such a paper as this to attempt to lay 
down any rules for the guidance of the sections, or to enter upon the 
extent and limits of then* privileges, or to advocate their representa- 
tion, or the manner of their representation in the Council of the 

" It has been my intention to inaugurate an idea which I trust 
will be of advantage to the Institute and the colony ; and now, 
with a view to giving it effect, I give notice that I will move, 
at the next ordinary meeting, as follows: — That the whole ques- 

xiy Proceedings, die. 

tion be referred to a committee, for consideration and report, 
both, as to its merits and the most easy method of carrying it into 
effect. I propose the following gentlemen : — the Hon. Capt. Clarke, 
M.L.A. ; Professors Wilson, Hearn, and Irving, of the University ; 
Dr. Macadam, Mr. Orlebar, Dr. Eades, Mr. Thomas, E. Rawlinson, 
and the mover. . 

" I give also notice of motion to the following effect : — 

" That a board be formed ont of the members of the sections, to 
be a board of practical and theoretical science, to be open to take 
cognizance of and give advice npon matters connected with the de- 
velopment of any branch of material resources of the colony, more 
especially agriculture and mining." 

The discussion on this paper was postponed till the next meeting. 

Professor Irving read, on behalf of Herr Gustav Joachimi, some 
notes upon the " Wall Paintings of Herculaneum and Pompeii." A 
large number of prints, lately published in Berlin, representing these 
paintings, were exhibited. The paper was as follows : — 

"These pictures are sjDecirnens of a work lately published at 
Berlin, containing nearly one hundred plates of copies of wall paint- 
ings of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The ancients did not know our 
cheap manner of papering the walls of their dwelling houses, instead 
of which they had the more substantial one of decorating them with 
paintings al fresco, and after being excavated and properly cleaned 
from dust and mud, these paintings have preserved the brilliancy of 
their colours, and appear as having just been finished from the hand of 
the painter. It is very interesting to see here what Art was 
eighteen centuries back in merely provincial towns of the great 
Roman empire, and what it can do now in coloured printing. 

" A Girl Writing. — Very likely the portrait of a Pompeian beauty. 
She is thoughtfully pausing, and we do not know whether she intends 
writing poetry or a letter of love on her wax tablets. 

" Narcissus at the Fountain. — The beauty of the Thespian youth, 
sitting at the edge of the fountain, languishing with love and silently 
consuming with an inward fire, is too simple and evident at the first 
glance to require more particidar remark. The fable of his having 
conceived a passion for himself, and dying of love for the reflection 
in the water of his own image, from which he could meet with no 
response, is also well-known. 

" Dancing Girls. — This picture contributed very much to spread 
the fame of ancient painting. It has been copied a thousand times, 
and at Naples, at a certain period, the house decorators were only 
employed in making copies of these dancers. Thus it was that the 
seductive Lady Hamilton, of unhappy memory, could revive this art. 
The custom of dancing at revels and banquets passed over from the 
degenerated Greeks to the Romans. 

" Achilles giving wp Briseis. — This may be said to be one of the 
most celebrated pictures that has been discovered in later days, and, 

Proceedings, &c. xv 

indeed, at any time at Pompeii. It is very likely a copy of one of 
the most celebrated pictures of antiquity. Achilles is sitting near 
his tent, the ships being wisely omitted, the heralds, Talhybius and 
Eurybates, had come unwillingly, and from a feeling of respect are 
standing at a distance, and turning away. The hero gives them a 
friendly greeting, and bids them approach, as it is not their fault 
that they have been sent by Agamemnon. He then proceeds : 
'Patroclus, bring the fair Briseis, and conduct my captive to the 
haughty king ! ' The wrath and indignation of Achilles is easily 
detected, where he takes the solemn oath never to assist Agamemnon 
in any difficulties. Thus commences Homer, in his Iliad, with the 
words : — 

Mrjviv aeiSe Oca IhjklfiaBeS} ' A)(iX\i]os. 

That is :— 

' Sing to me,. Muse, the wrath of Achilles, the son of Pelous. ' 
Briseis, who, according to Homer, follows the heralds unwillingly, 
•is weeping while she is yet in his presence. It is impossible to mis- 
take old Phoenix in this bald old fellow, and in the others, Achilles' 
Myrmidons watching the proceedings. Everything lias been well- 
considered and arranged with care, and the entire space has been 
employed to the greatest possible advantage. Sir Edward Bulwer 
mentions this picture in his ' Last Days of Pompeii.' 

"Juno visiting Jupiter upon Mount Ida. — Principal part of a large 
picture. This visit of Juno is described in the fourteenth book of 
the Iliad. She is with her attendant, Iris. Juno is remarkable for 
the size of her naming eyes. Bourns wo-rvia. 'H/>?; is she called 
by Homer, which signifies the gracious Juno with heifer's eyes. 
Her arms are left uncovered in honor of another epithet given to her 
by Homer : \evKuf\evos, that is with white arms. If she was 
not according to the ancient poets, an always cunning and grumbling 
shrew, we could not understand why she was so much neglected by 

" Jupiter in the Clouds. — The father of the gods is here couched 
on a bed of clouds, according to his character, cloud compeller, 
vecfieXTjiyepeTa ZeD? of Homer. On the other side, the eagle 
is seen, the inhabitant of the clouds and servant of Jupiter. The 
thunderbolt is ready at hand. Busy thought and a certain degree of 
annoyance are plainly expressed in Jupiter's widely open eyes and 
half open mouth. He is crowned with oak leaves, and the presence 
of Cupid may give rise to the idea that he intends some amusement 
with some of his lady subjects. 

" A Scene from a Comedy. — The master leaving the house has 
charged the slave with some particular business, and the unfaithful 
steward has taken the opportunity of playing the master of the 
house, given a party, and ordered a flute-player. But during the 

xvi Proceedings, &c. 

very best merriment the master returns, and is just represented as 
being an unseen witness of the scene. 

" Phryxus and Helle. — In this picture Phryxus, the son of Atha- 
mas, is represented in the act of being carried away, with his sister, 
from the sacrificial altar by the ram with the golden fleece, brought 
to Tiim by Jupiter. It was from this ram that Helle fell into the 
sea, and gave her name to the Hellespont. Narrators themselves do 
not enter much into the manner in which the ram carried brother 
and sister. It is only mentioned 'a journey through the air.' But the 
wings which, according to this, must have been introduced in the 
picture, would have spoiled the whole arrangment, and the painter 
has therefore preferred letting the ram walk upon or through the 
waves. The moment is well chosen — Phryxus stretching out his 
hand to save his sister in the extreme moment before sinking, and 
is very nearly slipping off. Phryxus, after being safe, sacrifices the 
ram at Colchis, and suspends the golden fleece in a sacred grove. 
That gives the origin of the mythos of the Argonauts. 

"Medusa of Pompeii (the plain one). — You will all know very well 
the narrative of Medusa, one of the monster daughters of Gorgo. 
She had serpents instead of hair, and her look petrified everything. 
This head is distinguished by the divided expression of anger break- 
ing out into violence. 

" Medusa discovered at Stabia? (the colored one). — It is considered 
by all connoisseurs of art the best description of a Medusa head. It 
is perfectly consistent with the original character of the Gorgon, 
which is one of amazement and horror with those various forms of 
beauty given to her by Grecian art of early ages. The green color 
of the Salamander about the brown locks of her head is very favor- 
able to the intended effect, as the pale complexion which contrasts 
so well with the blue color of the white of the eyes. It is interest- 
ing to compare this work, which may be considered a masterpiece of 
Grecian art, with two Medusa heads at Florenze Gallery, by Leonardo 
da Vinci and Michael Angelo da Caravarri, and it may be said to be 
certain that the ancients far surpassed the moderns in effecting much 
by little means. 

" It remains only for me to add that a good part of these remarks 
is founded on the authority of Professor Ottfried Mueller and 
Professor Welcker, of Bonn, two of the most eminent explorers of 

" Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen — Not being a member yet of your 
Institute, which I intend and hope shortly to be, I trust you will 
excuse me for having trespassed so much on your valuable time, for 
the sake of this fine exhibition. 


Dr. Mueller laid upon the table the second number of his " Frag- 
menta Phytographise Australia?." 
The Institute then separated. 

Proceedings, &c. xvii 

28th July, 1858. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

Dr. Mueller, Vice-President, in the Chair. 

The minutes of the previous meeting, after some discussion, were 
confirmed as read, and new members were introduced to the Institute. 

The Secretaiy read the names of eight candidates for ordinary 

The following gentlemen were elected ordinary members of the In- 
stitute, by ballot : — 

Frederick Lloyd, Esq., M.D., Melbourne. 
Nicholas O'Connor, Esq., Melbourne. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, viz. : 
No. 51, vol. XIII., of the " Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society 
of London," by the society ; the " Australian Medical Journal," from 
the commencement till date, by the Medical Society of Victoria ; 
Monthly Abstract for May, 1858, and, also, Meteorological Table for 
June, 1858, by the Government of New South Wales. 

In pursuance of notice of motion, the Rev. J. I. Bleasdale moved 
" That the whole question of sections in the Institute be referred to 
a committee for consideration and report, both as to its merits and 
. the most easy method of carrying it into effect. The following gen- 
tlemen to form the committee :— Hon. Capt. Clarke, R.E., Professors 
Wilson, Irving, and Hearn, Dr. Macadam, A. B. Orlebar, Esq., M.A., 
Dr. Eades, Thos. E. Rawlinson, Esq., C.E., and the mover." This 
was seconded by Dr. MacKenna and carried. 

With the consent of the members, the Rev. Mr. Bleasdale, with- 
drew the second clause of the motion standing in his name. 

Dr. Ludwig Becker read a few notes on two kinds of Australian 
Leeches ; and also a paper on a small Australian Bat. The author 
stated that the bat was, probably, the smallest known mammal. 
The specimen referred to weighed only 2 dwts. 8 grs. The com- 
munications were illustrated by drawings and specimens. [Vide 
" Transactions."] In answer to a question, Dr. Becker stated that 
he believes the specimen to be that of an adult. 

R. B. Smyth, Esq., F.G.S., then exhibited and verbally described 
some Hygrometrical Instruments, and particularly the instrument 
concerning which he had previously read a paper. The following is 
an abstract of the remarks made : — 

He commenced by showing the method of using Daniell's hygro- 
meter, and in the course of his remarks pointed out the errors to 
which we are liable in deducing the temperature of the dew point 
from it in warm, dry climates. He next exhibited the dry and wet 
bulb thermometers, and explained their action, giving the formula of 
Dr. Apjohn for computing the dew point, and also the Greenwich 
factors. Apjohn's formula and the Greenwich factors, he stated, 
were not applicable to a warm, dry atmosphere ; and quoting from 


xviii Proceedings, &c. 

the observations made by himself at the Melbourne Observatory, 
showed the differences which existed between the true temperature 
of the dew point as ascertained by direct experiment, and as obtained 
by the formula and the factors applied to the indications of the dry 
and wet bulb thermometers. These exhibited some remarkable dis- 
crepancies. Mr. Smyth recommended that in every country where 
there is a fixed observatoiy, it should be the first duty of the director 
to commence a system of daily observations with good standard Kew 
thermometers, and the best construction of hygrometer, with the 
view of accumulating data from which useful factors could be de- 
duced ; and he expressed the opinion that observations, extending 
over lengthened periods, from many observatories, would give, in all 
probability, factors grouped in such a manner as to be useful in eveiy 
part of the world. He gave the results of some experiments which 
he had made to determine the effect of currents of air on the wet 
bulb, and expressed himself satisfied with the sufficiency of Mr. 
Glaister's theory. He concluded by exhibiting an instrument for 
ascertaining the dew point, after his own design,' manufactured by 
Mr. Edwin Jones, of Collins-street east. It consisted of two cups 
containing cold and relatively warm water, respectively emptying 
through pipes into a third cup (of thin gold), in which the bulb of 
a Kew thermometer was immersed. Mr. Smyth explained that this 
was oidy a modification of an old and well-known principle, but he 
believed the mechanical arrangements which he had obtained, and 
the substitution of a large Kew thermometer for the small one gene- 
rally used, would afford accurate results. 

Mr. Smyth replied to some questions put by the members. 

The Institute then separated. 

18th August, 1858. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

Sir W. F. Stawell, President, in the Chair. 

His Excellency the Governor was present. 

The reading of the minutes of the previous ordinary meeting was 
postponed, because of the unavoidable absence, during the early 
part of the evening, of the secretary, Dr. Macadam. 

Eecently elected members were introduced to the Institute. 
The following gentlemen were elected ordinary members, by ballot, 
Dr. Gillbee and R. B. Smyth, Esq., acting as scrutineers : — 
William Perry, Esq., Melbourne. 
William Swan Urquhart, Esq., Tarradale. 
William Robertson, Esq., Wooling, near Gisborne. 
David Blair, Esq., M.L.A., Melbourne. 
David Wilkinson, Esq., C.E., Prahran. 
Edmund Sasse, Esq., Geelong. 

Proceedings, &c. xix 

Herr Gustav Joachinii, Melbourne. 

Captain John A. Layard, H.E.I.C.S., Melbourne. 

The Hon. Captain Clarke, RE., was elected, by ballot, an 
honorary member of the Institute, on the recommendation 
of a majority of the Council. His name was proposed by 
Dr. Mueller, seconded by Dr. Iffla. 

The Secretary laid upon the table the following contributions, 
viz. : — 

Part I. Vol. XIV. of the Quarterly Journal of the Geological 
Society of London, and Vols. III., IV, V., and VI. of the Journal 
of the Geological Society of Dublin — by the Geological Society of 
London. Meteorological Table for New South Wales for July, with 
monthly abstract for June, 1858 — by the Government of New South 

R. B. Smyth, Esq., F.G.S., submitted, with explanatory remarks, 
" The Ozonometrical Observations," taken at the different meteoro- 
logical stations of Victoria. 

He exhibited some journals containing the actual slips of ozone 
test papers (Moffat's) which had been exposed day and mght at Mel- 
bourne, and at several stations in the interior of Victoria. He like- 
wise described the ozonometers of Moffat and Schonbein, both of 
which had been used for some length of time at the Melbourne 
Observatory, and for a short time simultaneously. The following 
table, showing the results for a portion of the year 1858, was handed 
to the members for their inspection : — 

Mean amount of ozone, by Moffat's ozonometer, at Melbourne, 
Beechworth, and Sandhurst, from 9J a.m. until 9| p.m., and 
from 9| p.m. until 9J a.m. 









Note. — At Flemington, in January, by Schonbein's ozonometer, the 
mean for the day was 2 - 2, and for the night 3*4. At Ballarat, in 
June, by Moffat's ozonometer, the mean for the day was 5 - 5, and for 
the night 5 - 7. The altitude of Melbourne is 94 - 5 feet above sea- 
level ; Beechworth, 1850 feet, and Sandhurst 714 feet. 

He stated that observations were commenced in March, 1 857, with 
Schonbein's ozonometer, at Melbourne ; and Moffat's ozonometer was 
shortly after received from England, but observations were not taken 
with it consecutively until nearly the end of 1857. 

b 2 




Day. Night. 

Day. Night. 

Day. Night. 

2-8 ... 3-7 ... 

... 3-0 ... 3-1 ... 

3-4 ... 4-8 ... 

... 3-6 ... 4-5 ... 

.. 1-2 ... 2-0 

3-0 ... 4-4 ... 

... 2-2 ... 4-4 .. 

.. 1-1 ... 2-1 

3-9 ... 5-4 ... 

... 3-2 ... 5-2 ... 

.. 2-4 ... 4-2 

4-5 ... 6-2 ... 

... 5-8 ... 77 ... 

.. 5-2 ... 7-3 

4-1 ... 5-3 ... 

... 5-9 ... 7-7 ... 

.. 6-9 ... 7-9 

5-3 ... 6-8 ... 

.. 7-3 ... 90 

xx Proceedings, &c. 

The next table showed the amounts of ozone (by Schonbein's ozo- 
nometer) registered at Flemington (about three miles north-west from 
Melbourne, and at an altitude of about 100 feet), and the approxi- 
mate mean temperature of the months, in 1857. 




Mean Temperature. 


4-0 . 

.. 5-0 



5-1 . 

.. 6-0 



6-7 . 

.. 7-9 



5-5 . 

.. 6-6 



5-9 . 

.. 6-5 



6-1 . 

.. 7-2 



6-4 . 

.. 7-3 



3-8 . 

.. 5-5 



2-6 . 

.. 4-1 


Mr. Smyth pointed out the necessity of obtaining the ozone test 
papers from well-known makers, guaranteed, if possible by the in- 
inventors, and discountenanced the proposal for each observer to pre- 
pare his own, as likely to lead to results differing in consequence of 
the degree of saturation of the papers, the quality of the paper, &c. 

In conclusion, he said, " The evidence at present before us seems to 
indicate, (1.) That in all seasons there is much more ozone during the 
night than during the day. (2.) That there is much more ozone du- 
ring the winter than during the summer, or, more correctly, more 
ozone in the colder, than in the warmer months. (3.) At Melbourne, 
the westerly and south-westerly winds appear to be generally highly 
charged with ozone, and the northerly and north-easterly winds de- 
ficient. (4.) All the evidence goes to show that there is much more 
ozone at the stations in the interior (at considerable elevations) than 
at Melbourne, but until observations shall have been made on the 
sea-coast, at some distance from the disturbing influences of a large 
city, it cannot be said with certainty that the interior is in excess of 
the coast. (5.) Nothing really valuable can be known respecting 
ozone until we have the results of observations at some well-selected 
stations in the tropics, and at some very northerly or some very 
southerly points (within the artic or antartic zones.) Does the amount 
of ozone increase on approaching the artic or antartic circles % Does it 
decrease and become almost inappreciable in the tropics % These are 
the questions that require solution." 

His Excellency asked some question respecting the effects of tem- 
perature on the action of the ozonometer ; and the President, and 
some of the members expressed their interest in the investigation. 

Dr. Mueller exhibited specimens of, and described, some rare bo- 
tanical plants. [Vide " Transactions."] 

After a short discussion on these communications, the Institute 

" * From 8 a.m. until 8 p.m., and from 8 p.m. until 8. a.m. 

Proceedings, &c. xxi 

8th September, 1858. 

Ordinary Meeting. 

Sir W. F. Stawcll, President, in the Chair. 

The minutes of the two previous ordinary meetings were read by 
the Secretary, and confirmed. 

Several recently elected members were introduced to the Institute 
by the President. 

The Secretary read the names of twelve candidates for ordinary 
membership, to be balloted for at the ensuing meeting. 

The Secretary laid upon the table, as a contribution from the Hon. 
Captain Clarke, R.E., a MS. copy of Mr. Gellibrand's report on Port 
Phillip, dated the 18th April, 1836. The Secretary was instructed 
to communicate the thanks of the Institute to the donor for his 
valuable contribution. 

The Secretary then read the report to the meeting, after which a